DUST [N]FORCER

2019

RESEARCH COLLABORATION | DATA PERFORMANCE

The project presents a collaboration between Asad Khan and Patricia Wu Wu. It orbits around a philo-fictional character, the ‘Dust Enforcer’— first appearing in Reza Negarestani’s Cyclonopedia’ as “[...]Pazuzu[...]The Sumero-Assyrian demon of epidemics,[...]The high acolyte of dust,[...]The southern desert wind[...]” [1]. For Negarestani, Pazuzu or the Dust Enforcer, utilises dust as a sentient relic that parasites on Earth through its inhabitants, where the human body becomes hostage to an alien will, a sporulating device for its widespread deadly contagion.

 

The collaboration seeks to liberate the Dust Enforcer from the textual paradigm, through different mediums — for it to navigate as an envoy to observe that which escapes cognition. The work uses the archaic violence of technology to construct an alternative image of the human, driven by a non-anthropocentric mode of vision. The resulting outcome serves an epistemic portal to navigate the obstacles pertaining the abductions of thought — required to communicate the image of ‘man' as the demon of the Anthropocene. The two distinct explorations of the ‘Dust Enforcer’ are materialised into the following 'species' of dust:

1. LiDAR retrieved dust particles of Wu Wu's face, later accreted together through algorithmic simulation, and materialised into a digitally fabricated face mask by Wu Wu.

2. LiDAR (Light Detection and Ranging) and FLIR (Forward Looking Infrared Radar)

retrieved dust particles of a designed choreography of Wu Wu’s body wearing the face mask. The results are simulated in the form of a time-based performance.

[1] Negarestani, R. 2008. Cyclonopedia: Complicity with Anonymous Materials. Anomaly Series.Re.Press.

The work was exhibited at Talbot Rice Gallery for Trading Zone exhibition from 24 May until 22 June 2019.  It was funded by PRE Grant (Edinburgh College of Art) & IAD Action Fund (Univ. of Edinburgh).