Friday, May 23, 2014

dances with drones: MIA and Eleven Play (Japan)

Two more examples of drones in pop culture:

MIA has just released a new, self-directed video, of her song "Double Bubble Trouble" from the album Matangi. It's another one of MIA's patented full-of-radical-gestures and a wild stew of images. The main issues she seems to raise are "violence" -- and the danger that this might proliferate as guns are made with 3D printers -- and drones -- which in the vid seem to be both agents of surveillance and targeted killings. (There is a quick shot of a poster on a wall that says: "Drone Survival Guide.") The drones that circle above the dancers at the end of the video are in the shape of peace signs. And MIA warns us that "1984 is Now." Go watch it, see what you think, MIA puts these things out there to raise controversy and discussion, as far as I can tell.

And then there's this beautiful and much more easily read drone dance from the Japanese troupe Eleven Play (courtesy Dangerous Minds). And I think Dangerous Minds says it all: [the troupe] manages to utilize drone technology for art and beauty, while simultaneously depicting all of its potential insidiousness. At first the dancers interact cautiously and experimentally with the drones, then the machines become more active and more threatening. With no control over the increasingly volatile technology, the women flee the stage in fear. In the end, the only ones left dancing are the drones themselves

And the Palestinians in Gaza who live with Israeli drones constantly in the air call them: zanana
Meaning variously, "a wife’s relentless nagging", or "to nag with drone-like talk."


vercccccccccccio said...

Just stumbled across your blog and really have appreciated the content. Not what I expected from a blog entitled "Hawgblawg" but great. Any chance that you could provide some more lyrics in Arabic and English for Yasmine Hamdan's album for those of us learning Arabic?

Ted Swedenburg said...

If I come across any more I will try to.