Auge/Maschine II

© Generali Foundation Collection—Permanent Loan to the Museum der Moderne Salzburg

Harun Farocki

Auge/Maschine II, 2002

Video, color, sound, 15 min Director: Harun Farocki Produced by: Harun Farocki Filmproduktion


Artwork text

How can the distinction between "man" and "machine" still be made given today's technology? In modern weapons technology the categories are on the move: intelligence is no longer limited to humans. In "Eye / Machine II" Farocki has brought together visual material from both military and civilian sectors, showing machines operating intelligently and what it is they see when working on the basis of image processing programs. The traditional man-machine distinction becomes reduced to "eye/machine", where cameras are implanted into the machines as eyes. As a result of the Gulf War, the technology of warfare came to provide an innovative impulse which boosted the development of civilian production. Farocki shows us computer simulated images looking like something out of science-fiction films: rockets steer towards islands set in a shining sea; apartment blocks are blown up; fighter aircraft fire at one another with rockets and defend themselves with virtual flares … These computer battlefields - will they suffice or shall we need further rationalization drives for new wars? "Eye / Machine II" is the continuation of a wider examination of the same subject: Intelligent machines and intelligent weapons. As an installation the work is presented on two monitors or as a double projection. In this, the single-channel version, the two image tracks are shown simultaneously on one screen. (Antje Ehmann)