Turbulence Artist Studios: [ FALLUJAH. IRAQ. 31/03/2004 ] by Michael Takeo Magruder
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According to witnesses and U.S. officials, four American ‘civilians’were ambushed and shot or beaten to death by Iraqi insurgents. Townspeople mutilated the bodies of the men, dragged them through the streets, lynched them from a bridge, and burned them while crowds danced and cheered. The desecration of the victims’bodies was filmed in its entirety by an Associated Press camera crew. There was no intervention by coalition forces during the attack or the subsequent mutilations. The coverage of the event was highly censored on all international media networks. The ‘civilian’casualties were mercenaries employed by Blackwater Security Consulting, of Moyock, N.C.
This work is not intended as a discourse on the axiom of ‘the evil nature of war’. It is merely a consideration of an event we have (or have not) witnessed and a reflection on the iconic nature of conflict in the new millennium.
Michael Takeo Magruder is an American artist based in the UK who works within the fields of New and Interactive Media. He received his formal education at the University of Virginia, USA, graduating with a degree in Biological Sciences.
For the past eight years his artistic practice has reflected upon society’s data-driven and information saturated existence through the examination of international news communications. By recombining the notions of art and media, it has been his intention to analyze the interconnections which have been forged between the individual and the pervasive media network. It is a questioning of product vs. process, knowledge vs. stimulation, fact vs. perspective.
Magruder’s artistic production has been exhibited worldwide and encompasses an eclectic mix of forms, ranging from futuristic stained-glass windows, digital lightscreens and modular light-sculptures to architectural manipulations, ephemeral video projections and interactive network installations. His current explorations and research embrace 3D stereoscopic projection, immersive multi-sensory environments and interactive non-linear narratives for network/gallery settings. His work in these fields is presently supported by Turbulence.org, 3D Visualization Group: University of Warwick, and Arts Council England.
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