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  • Antony Wilder

Is Photography Dead? Parnonas Artist Residency, Greece.

Updated: Aug 29, 2023

Trevor Paglen, Bloom (#79655d), 2020, dye sublimation print, 26" × 19-1/2" (66 cm × 49.5 cm) 26-3/4" × 20-1/4" × 1-1/2" (67.9 cm × 51.4 cm × 3.8 cm), framed

Trevor Paglen's recent work explores themes of power, surveillance, and technology, often through cutting-edge techniques and technologies.

One of his most recent projects is "Bloom," a large-scale installation that uses artificial intelligence to create constantly-evolving abstract images. The images are generated by an algorithm trained on a dataset of aerial photographs of military and intelligence sites, creating a kind of ideational visual language that references the hidden structures of power and control that these sites represent.

Another recent project is "Orbital Reflector," a sculpture launched into space in 2018. The sculpture, designed in collaboration with the Nevada Museum of Art, is a diamond-shaped balloon that reflects sunlight to Earth, creating a visible object in the night sky. While the sculpture is purely aesthetic, it raises crucial questions about the use of space and the militarization of orbit.

Paglen has also continued to work on his "Invisible Images" series, which explores the hidden world of computer vision and artificial intelligence. In these works, he uses algorithms to create images recognizable to machines but not humans, highlighting how our relationship with technology is changing how we see and understand the world.

Overall, Trevor Paglen's recent work continues to push the boundaries of what is possible in contemporary art, using innovative techniques and technologies to reveal the hidden structures and networks that shape our world. In addition, his work challenges us to think critically about the relationship between power, technology, and society.

I believe he will continue to significantly influence contemporary art and culture for many years.

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