Richard Mosse Trains His Lens on the Refugee Crisis Using Weapons-Grade Cameras

Mosse's images show heat, as opposed to light.

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Feb 15 2017, 1:40pm

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This still, from the multichannel video work Incoming, shows young Eritrean and Ethiopian men removing religious iconography from a makeshift Orthodox Eritrean church at the infamous "Jungle" refugee camp in Calais, France, prior to its controversial demolition in October 2016. Featured in a forthcoming photo book of the same name, the image was made using weapons-grade telephoto cameras that see heat as opposed to light. More commonly used for military purposes, these cameras can see a human body up to 18 miles away, and they can even pick up heat signatures left by just handprints and footprints. By repurposing and subverting this technology, Richard Mosse has documented the spiraling refugee crisis across the Middle East, Africa, and Europe. 

Still frame from Incoming, 2015–2016. Three screen video installation by Richard Mosse in collaboration with Trevor Tweeten and Ben Frost. Co-commissioned by National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne, and Barbican Art Gallery, London. © Richard Mosse 2016, courtesy MACK; Jack Shainman Gallery, New York; and carlier|gebauer, Berlin.

Still frame from Incoming, 2015–2016. Three screen video installation by Richard Mosse in collaboration with Trevor Tweeten and Ben Frost. Co-commissioned by National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne, and Barbican Art Gallery, London. Courtesy of the artist, Jack Shainman Gallery, New York and carlier|gebauer, Berlin

Still frame from Incoming, 2015–2016. Three screen video installation by Richard Mosse in collaboration with Trevor Tweeten and Ben Frost. Co-commissioned by National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne, and Barbican Art Gallery, London. Courtesy of the artist, Jack Shainman Gallery, New York and carlier|gebauer, Berlin

Still frame from Incoming, 2015–2016. Three screen video installation by Richard Mosse in collaboration with Trevor Tweeten and Ben Frost. Co-commissioned by National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne, and Barbican Art Gallery, London. Courtesy of the artist, Jack Shainman Gallery, New York and carlier|gebauer, Berlin

Still frame from Incoming, 2015–2016. Three screen video installation by Richard Mosse in collaboration with Trevor Tweeten and Ben Frost. Co-commissioned by National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne, and Barbican Art Gallery, London. Courtesy of the artist, Jack Shainman Gallery, New York and carlier|gebauer, Berlin


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