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Evan Hume, Space Sentinel-Summer 2010-11, 2021




archival inkjet print unframed, 11” x 8.5", edition of 10, "Viewing Distance compiles and transforms declassified material from United States government archives to examine photography as a tool of the military-industrial complex for reconnaissance, surveillance, and documentation of advanced technologies. While many of the source images date back to the mid-twentieth century, they have only recently been declassified and much information remains secret. These images represent the decades-long time delay from when knowledge comes into being and when it becomes publicly accessible. Some are deliberately concealed while others have been altered by repeated reproduction during their time in the archives. Photography's technical and operational evolution in the twentieth century and into the twenty-first is inseparable from political conflict. The early Cold War period that much of the source material originates from is a significant turning point in photography’s use for intelligence gathering and paved the way for satellite and drone imaging. Desire for clandestine photoreconnaissance of the Soviet Union led to high-altitude, high-speed aircraft such as the U-2 and SR-71, the latter essentially a camera that could fly faster than the speed of sound. Viewing Distance combines photographs pertaining to these innovations with more recent documents and devices, connecting past and present. Processes including analog printing, digital collage, scanner manipulation, and data bending animate the archival material. Through these interventions, historical fragments are presented in a state of flux, open to alternate associations and implications. What we are allowed to know and see is often incomplete and indeterminate, encouraging speculation and critical vision."

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11.00 x 8.50 x 1.00 in | 27.94 x 21.59 x 2.54 cm

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