The Drone Series by Mads Ljungdahl hits directly into a current and very concerning discussion. The sensuous design language combined with a two dimensional, graphic tightness materializes the aesthetics of this fascinating phenomenon.
Ljungdahl’s first studies of drones were published as ARK folder no. 100 at the end of 2013.
The series presented at Superobjekt is far more extensive than his first studies, and for the first time, they are done as black/white “full frame” prints.
Mads Ljungdahl works with photography, drawing, sound, video and various hybrids between these fields. He has also worked with music production, film and sound design for the performing arts. In the recent years, Ljungdahl’s focus has been on narratives – creating images that communicate clearly and at the same time stay mysterious. The drone series is his most minimalist graphic work so far. They are characterised by objective observation, yet numerous possible stories and imaginations lure beneath the immediate image.
The word ‘drone’ means male bee. It is the bees that cannot sting, but instead they are equipped with reproductive organs. In English, drone means to be lazy and to take advantage of the work of others. Drones are unmanned flying crafts, buzzing in the air while monitoring its surroundings, and they come in a myriad of varieties. They are intimidating, create insecurity, provoke our sense of ethics and raise questions about the classic relationship between man and machine as well as ethical questions regarding their use. Their hidden existence has lead to become a fascination with this strange phenomenon, where large and small mechanical messengers slowly start populating our surroundings – in urban and rural areas, as friends and enemies – maybe just as play – but above all as the mechanical ghost who visit us without invitation.
DRONE SHOW provides a glimpse into a series of observations and depictions of drones, whose various functions and purposes we can only reflect upon.