Drone Aesthetics by Eugénie Shinkle
Drone Aesthetics is concerned with the visual representation of drone warfare, in particular, the extension of human senses through digital/machinic mediation. Lisa Barnard's Drone work is characterized by the confusion of dichotomous boundaries engendered by drone warfare - too human v. not human enough; real v. unreal
These works are characterized by the 'technological sublime' that replaces objective aesthetic consideration with 'awe and terror'. A stronger definition suggests that the sublime pairs the banal of the human with the overwhelming power of information technology. Video games through the military-enterntainment complex are used to train and treat soldiers. However, both military and entertainment as seperate industries now begin to influence each other.
These digital worlds that act as our sensorial extension need to only be real enough for the human-digital relationship to sustain itself. However, the human aspects of this 'postdigital' self are sustained through our physical body's interface, despite the appearance of the self's erasure. Stumplimity characterizes much of contemporary art, pairing long periods of boredom (i.e. the bored witness drone operator) and short bursts of perceptual overload.
Stumplify characterizes the drone operator's experience, rather than traditional sublime experience that ends in transcendence. The operator is faced with the problem of his own agency in an environment that confounds his agency. Drones become an extension of the self through machinic vision, leading too a situation of excessive reality (or the 'too real') for the operator faced with the very real consequences of his extended self.
Drones tipify the technological sublime. Military technologies extend our perception but do not lead to a posthuman other, but rather an uncertain configuration of human subject to shock and awe. This is further complicated by the fact that they are applied to real deaths that are not merely digital information. Machines are not morally seperate or liberate us from moral acts but further complicate them by extending our agency through their technology
research strands include:
Also touching technological sublime:
Muhheakantuck Everything has a name. (in Experience, Memory Reenactment)