Richard Mosse’s Incoming – A military-grade camera & Migrants

Richard Mosse - Still from Incoming, 2014-2016, three screen video installation with 7.1 surround sound, 52 min 10 sec
Richard Mosse – Still from Incoming, 2014-2016, three screen video installation with 7.1 surround sound, 52 min 10 sec

Art pieces inspired by war

As sad and as unfortunate as it may sound, war has the uncanny capacity to spawn an overflow of artistic output. The installations and exhibitions that come out of war throw new light on the motivation for conflict and the responses to conflict by soldiers. Art pieces inspired by war also highlight the widely varying interpretations of the effects of battle on not only the combatants but also on the larger population affected by the war. Needless to say, work of this nature is important to society.

Richard Mosse’s ‘Incoming’

Richard Mosse all too well understands the devastating effect of war. Mosse teamed up with electronic composer Ben Frost and cinematographer Trevor Tweeten to produce Incoming, a moving and powerful video installation that captures the experience of refugees and the migrants along the war-torn regions of Syria, Senegal, Afghanistan, Iraq as well as Somalia.

The military camera used in this project

Mosse utilized an innovative camera embedded with weapons-grade technology that allows a photographer to observe and capture images of people over 30 km away. The technology in the military telephoto camera is so high tech that it allowed Mosse to capture human beings as Missiles would see them; this means capturing unseen elements such as body heat that would otherwise be impossible to capture with a traditional camera.

(From right to left) Photographer Richard Mosse, Composer Ben Frost, Writer John Holten and Cinematographer Trevor Tweeten in Lesbos, Greece
(From right to left) Photographer Richard Mosse, Composer Ben Frost, Writer John Holten and Cinematographer Trevor Tweeten in Lesbos, Greece
Photo: artnet.com

Videos: Richard Mosse speaks about Incoming, 2018

5min 18sec

5min 9sec

Analysis

It is these elements that allowed the exhibition to speak for itself; to pass across the astonishing message of suffering and chaos that people in war-torn areas experience every day. Incoming succeeded in reminding human beings about the tragedy that is war. The military camera added firm artistic violence that dehumanized and humanized the subjects at the time. The people captured were portrayed in zombie form, stripping each subject of his or her ‘humaness’ so to speak.

Richard Mosse has never been one to shy away from pieces that display terrible beauty, which has by now become his signature trademark. Because he utilized multiple screens to come up with the images, from the outside looking in, the pictures appear disorienting and chaotic. However, if you stare at the photos long enough, the visceral emotion that overpowers you is truly spellbinding.

Conclusion

The dramatic effect on the faces and the figures captured is what made Incoming remarkable. The images appear ghostly one minute and the next, they are so still that they look like marble statues. In making us understand what it is like for the people in these areas through the lens of a military-grade camera, Mosse managed to create terrible, beautiful images. At the same time, he asks human beings to be ashamed and stunned by the consequences of war.

Images

Exhibition photos

Installation view of Incoming by Richard Mosse in collaboration with Trevor Tweeten and Ben Frost, The Curve, Barbican Centre, February 15 - April 23, 2017, photo Tristan Fewings/Getty Images
Installation view of Incoming by Richard Mosse in collaboration with Trevor Tweeten and Ben Frost, The Curve, Barbican Centre, February 15 – April 23, 2017
Photo: Tristan Fewings/Getty Images

Installation view of Incoming by Richard Mosse in collaboration with Trevor Tweeten and Ben Frost, The Curve, Barbican Centre, February 15 - April 23, 2017, photo Tristan Fewings/Getty Images
Installation view of Incoming by Richard Mosse in collaboration with Trevor Tweeten and Ben Frost, The Curve, Barbican Centre, February 15 – April 23, 2017
Photo: Tristan Fewings/Getty Images

Installation view of Incoming by Richard Mosse in collaboration with Trevor Tweeten and Ben Frost, The Curve, Barbican Centre, February 15 - April 23, 2017, photo Tristan Fewings/Getty Images
Installation view of Incoming by Richard Mosse in collaboration with Trevor Tweeten and Ben Frost, The Curve, Barbican Centre, February 15 – April 23, 2017
Photo: Tristan Fewings/Getty Images

Installation view of Incoming by Richard Mosse in collaboration with Trevor Tweeten and Ben Frost, The Curve, Barbican Centre, February 15 - April 23, 2017, photo Tristan Fewings/Getty Images
Installation view of Incoming by Richard Mosse in collaboration with Trevor Tweeten and Ben Frost, The Curve, Barbican Centre, February 15 – April 23, 2017
Photo: Tristan Fewings/Getty Images

Installation view of Incoming by Richard Mosse, NGV Triennial, National Gallery of Victoria, 2017
Installation view of Incoming by Richard Mosse, NGV Triennial, National Gallery of Victoria, 2017

Video stills

Richard Mosse - Still from Incoming #72, 2014-2016, three screen video installation with 7.1 surround sound, 52 min 10 sec
Richard Mosse – Still from Incoming #72, 2014-2016, three screen video installation with 7.1 surround sound, 52 min 10 sec

Richard Mosse - Still from Incoming #85, 2014-2016, three screen video installation with 7.1 surround sound, 52 min 10 sec
Richard Mosse – Still from Incoming #85, 2014-2016, three screen video installation with 7.1 surround sound, 52 min 10 sec

Richard Mosse - Still from Incoming #91, 2014-2016, three screen video installation with 7.1 surround sound, 52 min 10 sec
Richard Mosse – Still from Incoming #91, 2014-2016, three screen video installation with 7.1 surround sound, 52 min 10 sec

Richard Mosse - Still from Incoming #96, 2014-2016, three screen video installation with 7.1 surround sound, 52 min 10 sec
Richard Mosse – Still from Incoming #96, 2014-2016, three screen video installation with 7.1 surround sound, 52 min 10 sec

Richard Mosse - Still from Incoming #110, 2014-2016, three screen video installation with 7.1 surround sound, 52 min 10 sec
Richard Mosse – Still from Incoming #110, 2014-2016, three screen video installation with 7.1 surround sound, 52 min 10 sec

Richard Mosse - Still from Incoming #154, 2014-2016, three screen video installation with 7.1 surround sound, 52 min 10 sec
Richard Mosse – Still from Incoming #154, 2014-2016, three screen video installation with 7.1 surround sound, 52 min 10 sec

Richard Mosse - Still from Incoming #280, 2014-2016, three screen video installation with 7.1 surround sound, 52 min 10 sec
Richard Mosse – Still from Incoming #280, 2014-2016, three screen video installation with 7.1 surround sound, 52 min 10 sec

Richard Mosse - Still from Incoming #293, 2014-2016, three screen video installation with 7.1 surround sound, 52 min 10 sec
Richard Mosse – Still from Incoming #293, 2014-2016, three screen video installation with 7.1 surround sound, 52 min 10 sec

Richard Mosse - Still from Incoming, 2014-2016, three screen video installation with 7.1 surround sound, 52 min 10 sec 1
Richard Mosse – Still from Incoming, 2014-2016, three screen video installation with 7.1 surround sound, 52 min 10 sec

Richard Mosse - Still from Incoming, 2014-2016, three screen video installation with 7.1 surround sound, 52 min 10 sec
Richard Mosse – Still from Incoming, 2014-2016, three screen video installation with 7.1 surround sound, 52 min 10 sec

Richard Mosse - Still from Incoming, 2014-2016, three screen video installation with 7.1 surround sound, 52 min 10 sec
Richard Mosse – Still from Incoming, 2014-2016, three screen video installation with 7.1 surround sound, 52 min 10 sec

Richard Mosse - Still from Incoming, 2014-2016, three screen video installation with 7.1 surround sound, 52 min 10 sec
Richard Mosse – Still from Incoming, 2014-2016, three screen video installation with 7.1 surround sound, 52 min 10 sec

Richard Mosse - Still from Incoming, 2014-2016, three screen video installation with 7.1 surround sound, 52 min 10 sec
Richard Mosse – Still from Incoming, 2014-2016, three screen video installation with 7.1 surround sound, 52 min 10 sec

Richard Mosse - Still from Incoming, 2014-2016, three screen video installation with 7.1 surround sound, 52 min 10 sec
Richard Mosse – Still from Incoming, 2014-2016, three screen video installation with 7.1 surround sound, 52 min 10 sec

Richard Mosse - Still from Incoming, 2014-2016, three screen video installation with 7.1 surround sound, 52 min 10 sec
Richard Mosse – Still from Incoming, 2014-2016, three screen video installation with 7.1 surround sound, 52 min 10 sec

Richard Mosse - Still from Incoming, 2014-2016, three screen video installation with 7.1 surround sound, 52 min 10 sec
Richard Mosse – Still from Incoming, 2014-2016, three screen video installation with 7.1 surround sound, 52 min 10 sec

Richard Mosse - Still from Incoming, 2014-2016, three screen video installation with 7.1 surround sound, 52 min 10 sec
Richard Mosse – Still from Incoming, 2014-2016, three screen video installation with 7.1 surround sound, 52 min 10 sec

Richard Mosse - Still from Incoming, 2014-2016, three screen video installation with 7.1 surround sound, 52 min 10 sec
Richard Mosse – Still from Incoming, 2014-2016, three screen video installation with 7.1 surround sound, 52 min 10 sec

Richard Mosse - Still from Incoming, 2014-2016, three screen video installation with 7.1 surround sound, 52 min 10 sec
Richard Mosse – Still from Incoming, 2014-2016, three screen video installation with 7.1 surround sound, 52 min 10 sec

Richard Mosse - Still from Incoming, 2014-2016, three screen video installation with 7.1 surround sound, 52 min 10 sec
Richard Mosse – Still from Incoming, 2014-2016, three screen video installation with 7.1 surround sound, 52 min 10 sec

Richard Mosse - Still from Incoming, 2014-2016, three screen video installation with 7.1 surround sound, 52 min 10 sec
Richard Mosse – Still from Incoming, 2014-2016, three screen video installation with 7.1 surround sound, 52 min 10 sec

Richard Mosse - Still from Incoming, 2014-2016, three screen video installation with 7.1 surround sound, 52 min 10 sec
Richard Mosse – Still from Incoming, 2014-2016, three screen video installation with 7.1 surround sound, 52 min 10 sec

‘Incoming’ book

Richard Mosse - Incoming, 2017, 576 pages, 280 metallic tritone plates, 17.5 x 19.7 cm
Richard Mosse – Incoming, 2017, 576 pages, 280 metallic tritone plates, 17.5 x 19.7 cm

Richard Mosse - Incoming, 2017, 576 pages, 280 metallic tritone plates, 17.5 x 19.7 cm
Richard Mosse – Incoming, 2017, 576 pages, 280 metallic tritone plates, 17.5 x 19.7 cm

Richard Mosse - Incoming, 2017, 576 pages, 280 metallic tritone plates, 17.5 x 19.7 cm
Richard Mosse – Incoming, 2017, 576 pages, 280 metallic tritone plates, 17.5 x 19.7 cm

Richard Mosse - Incoming, 2017, 576 pages, 280 metallic tritone plates, 17.5 x 19.7 cm
Richard Mosse – Incoming, 2017, 576 pages, 280 metallic tritone plates, 17.5 x 19.7 cm

Richard Mosse - Incoming, 2017, 576 pages, 280 metallic tritone plates, 17.5 x 19.7 cm
Richard Mosse – Incoming, 2017, 576 pages, 280 metallic tritone plates, 17.5 x 19.7 cm

Richard Mosse - Incoming, 2017, 576 pages, 280 metallic tritone plates, 17.5 x 19.7 cm
Richard Mosse – Incoming, 2017, 576 pages, 280 metallic tritone plates, 17.5 x 19.7 cm

More

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