Panel: If You See Something Say Something: Art, War, Surveillance and the Sustainability of Urgency in the Post 9/11 Era
In March of 2006, to roughly coincide with the 3rd anniversary of the start of the Iraq conflict, I first entered the online US Army recruiting game, America’s Army, in order to manually type the name, age, service branch and date of death of each service person who has died to date in Iraq. dead-in-iraq is essentially a fleeting, performative memorial to those military personnel who have been killed in this ongoing conflict. My actions are at the same time an interventionist gesture to protest against the war in Iraq. This work marked the overt politicization of my creative practice. I went on to create an online database of memorial concepts and projects entitled iraqimemorial.?org. This ongoing project invites artists, architects and other creative individuals to upload memorial concepts dedicated to the many untold thousands of civilian casualties from the Iraq invasion. Through these works and others, I seek to develop and implement strategies for utilizing the Internet as the location for interventionist acts of consience, memory and protest. I will discuss the progression of these works and ongoing efforts to continue to engage issues surrounding politics, war and terror, including my participation in the fake New York Times End of the War edition, my efforts to place Hosni Mubarak up for sale on eBay and ongoing works to reify the us and them of representations of war through contemporary first person shooter video games. iraqimemorial.org
- Joseph DeLappe is a Professor of the Department of Art at the University of Nevada (USA) where he directs the Digital Media program. Working with electronic and new media since 1983, his work in online gaming performance and electromechanical installation have been shown throughout the United States and abroad – including exhibitions and performances in Australia, the United Kingdom, China, Germany, Spain, Belgium, the Netherlands and Canada. In 2006 he began the project dead-in-iraq, to type consecutively, all names of America’s military casualties from the war in Iraq into the America’s Army first person shooter online recruiting game. He also directs the iraqimemorial.org project, an ongoing web based exhibition and open call for proposed memorials to the many thousand of civilian casualties from the war in Iraq. He has lectured throughout the world regarding his work, including most recently at the Museum of Modern Art in New York City. He has been interviewed on CNN, NPR, CBC, the Australian Broadcasting Corporation and on The Rachel Maddow Show on Air America Radio. His works have been featured in the New York Times, The Australian Morning Herald, Artweek, Art in American and in the 2010 book from Routledge entitled Joystick Soldiers: The Politics of Play in Military Video Game.