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Tomas van Houtryve at Boston's Flash Forward Festival

Event Date:

April 29, 2015 | 7:00 PM EDT
Image by Tomas van Houtryve. United States, 2014.

A drone's-eye view of America reveals the changing nature of war, privacy, and government...

Media file: drones_4.jpg
A playground seen from above in Sacramento County, California. The London-based Bureau of Investigative Journalism estimates that over 200 children were killed in drone strikes in Pakistan, Yemen, and Somalia between 2004 and 2013. Image by Tomas van Houtryve. United States, 2014.

Tomas van Houtryve, Pulitzer Center grantee and VII Photo Agency member, explores the implications of drones' use for the conduct of war and for personal privacy during a conversation about his drone photography on Wednesday, April 29 during the Flash Forward Festival. The festival, which exhibits international and New England photography, runs from April 24–May 3 at locations throughout Boston.
Over the past decade, drones have become a weapon used by the U.S. military and the CIA for strikes overseas. Their use for surveillance and commercial purposes is also rapidly expanding both at home and abroad. Van Houtryve attached his camera to a small drone and traveled across America to photograph the very sorts of gatherings that have become habitual targets for foreign air strikes—weddings, funerals, groups of people praying or exercising. He also flew his camera over settings in which drones are used to less lethal effect, such as prisons, oil fields, industrial feedlots, and stretches of the U.S.-Mexico border. The images captured from the drone's perspective engage with the changing nature of war, privacy, and government transparency.
Van Houtryve's Blue Sky Days project, which reveals a drone's-eye view of America, has received several top honors including ICP Infinity Award for Photojournalism; Pictures of the Year International, Award of Excellence Issue Reporting, White House News Photographers Association, First Prize Multimedia; World Press Photo, Second Prize Contemporary Issues; and TIME Magazine's Top 10 Photos of 2014.
Van Houtryve's photography and writing often focus on aspects of contemporary warfare and those activities of the modern State that are notable for their near invisibility, such as drones, surveillance, nuclear testing, and Cold War ideology. His work also been featured in solo exhibitions of his work in Paris, New York City, Spain and Italy.
Artist Talk Wednesday, April 29 7:00pm - 9:00pm Central Bistro 101 Arch Street #200 Boston, MA 02110
The talk is a free event and open to the public.