Decoy

Peter Spurgeon

2014 - Ongoing

England, United Kingdom

This 'Decoy' series relates to a secret British Air Ministry project that took place during the Second World War. Sound City film studios in Shepperton were commissioned to design fake cities, airfields, docks and oil refineries. The objective of this simulation was to divert enemy bombs away from the real targets. The decoys were set up a few miles away from their 'parent' locations and constructed using fires and electric lights. Today, only control bunkers remain at many of the sites as crumbling reminders of this forgotten endeavour. They sheltered the crew and housed generators for the lights. This simulation diverted 5% of enemy bombs away from their intended destinations.

The project is informed by archive sources and the images are made at former decoy locations. Theatrical lighting is introduced to animate the landscape and to evoke visual deception in war.

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