“Lamassu”, 3D model, and “Priest with Eagle”, 3D printed resin and electronic components, 2016 © Morehshin Allahyari, Courtesy Upfor Gallery, Portland
SITUATION #57: Morehshin Allahyari, Material Speculations: ISIS, 2015–2016
3 December 2016 – 5 February 2017
Morehshin Allahyari uses 3D printing technology as a tool for alternative artifact archiving, as well as a means of political resistance and documentation. In her series Material Speculations: ISIS she reconstructs selected artifacts of historical value that were destroyed by ISIS in 2015. After collecting and researching vast numbers of images and documents of the destroyed objects, she is able to recreate and print a 3D model of the artifact. Photographs, documents, maps and videos are all instrumental in the process of re-building, allowing the artist to create an image that cannot cease to exist, but is infinitely reproducible. All documentation gathered by the artist about the destroyed artifact is saved onto a flash drive embedded in the 3D-printed work. Material Speculations redefines notions of materiality, forcing us to rethink the concept of monument and challenging ideas of irreproducibility of the historical image. Finally, Material Speculations is an exploration of the political and poetic relationship between 3D printing, plastic, oil, technocapitalism and jihad.
For SITUATIONS/Re-enactment the work is presented in its physical form at Fotomuseum Winterthur and simultaneously hosted on the Link Cabinet, where the artist shares all digital files and models from the project, allowing users freely to access and download all data.