LIAM YOUNG, TOMORROW'S THOUGHTS TODAY (UK)
FRI 22.06.12 - SAT 08.09.12
Fabricated from components that were originally intended for aerial reconnaissance and police surveillance, Electronic Countermeasures is a flock of GPS-enabled quadcopter drones that broadcast their own WiFi network as a flying pirate file sharing infrastructure. They swarm into formation, transmit their pirate network, and then disperse, escaping detection, only to reform elsewhere. These behaviours allow the flock to become a highly site-specific means to create peer-to-peer communication.
As the drones fly and float, audience members can log on to the drone network with their phones and laptops. Using the drones as a local network they can upload files and share data with one another. As people interact with the drones, the drones glow with vibrant colours, break formation and their flight pattern becomes more dramatic and expressive. The drone’s aerial choreography highlights how nomadic infrastructures can act as robotic data clouds, floating between buildings like an aerial Napster or flying Pirate Bay.
In collaboration with Eleanor Saitta, Oliviu Lugojan-Ghenciu and Superflux.
BIO: Liam Young is an independent urbanist, designer and futurist. He is founder of the think tank Tomorrow’s Thoughts Today, a group whose projects explore the consequences of fantastic and speculative architectures and urbanisms. Liam also curates events and exhibitions including the annual Thrilling Wonder Stories series and runs the nomadic teaching studio ‘Unknown Fields Division’ at the Architectural Association in London. Each year the division travels to extreme landscapes to explore the unknown fields between cultivation and nature and spin cautionary tales of a new kind of wilderness.