Since Then, No One Has Talked with You - PhMuseum

Since Then, No One Has Talked with You

He Bo

2016

In 7 January, 2015, I was sitting in a cafe in the Louvre Museum when the headquarters of Charlie Hebdo were raided. In a few days after that moment, capture, patrol and massive parade became the high light of the press. Politicians, academics, artists and other people's discussions and arguments on terrorism, immigration, religion and colonial problems shook me a lot. I didn't know how to make a more rational and comprehensive analysis of this incident, but at that time, I was deeply impressed by one sentence: ‘Sometimes laughter can hurt, but laughter, humour and mockery are our only weapons’, said by Jean 'Cabu' Cabut, one of the founding members of Charlie Hebdo. For these words, there wasn't agreement or disagreement to me. The more important thing is that it produced an expression barrier for me about the ‘violence’ and its complicated factors. I could have a lot to say, but couldn't open my mouth. Saying is one-sided, and one-sidedness will hinder the subsequent expression.

So I can only go back to deal with the two points of violence and terrorist attacks themselves: attackers and victims.

These six pictures refer to six terrorist attacks or violent incidents. Using Francis Galton (1822-1911)'s methods (Galton devoted many years of study to the use of ‘Composite Portraiture’, in which photographs of different subjects were combined, through repeated limited exposure, to produce a single blended image), I composite the portraits of attackers who were identified by media into one face. The face is the base of the picture. Hundreds of news pictures about this incident become the tiny fragments that compose the face. The face is covered with the close-ups of victims' mouths. All the mouths form one sentence which comes from this incident and the sentence present in the way of Morse code. Morse code means translation, would you mind spending some time to listen to these buried words?

This project also contains 6 pieces of sound, each of them refers to one picture.

Lives have gone. Neither victims nor victimizers could speak any more. During this project, I looked through these victims' Facebook. The button of Follow is still alive, but there was no meaning to follow.

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  • Columbine High School Massacre (20 April, 1999), from the series 'Since Then, No One Has Talked with You', 2016 © He Bo

  • Beslan School Siege (1 September, 2004 – 3 September, 2004), from the series 'Since Then, No One Has Talked with You', 2016 © He Bo

  • London Bombings (7 July, 2005), from the series 'Since Then, No One Has Talked with You', 2016 © He Bo

  • Charlie Hebdo Shooting (7 January, 2015), from the series 'Since Then, No One Has Talked with You', 2016 © He Bo

  • Paris Attacks (13 November, 2015), from the series 'Since Then, No One Has Talked with You', 2016 © He Bo

  • Brussels Bombings (22 March, 2016), from the series 'Since Then, No One Has Talked with You', 2016 © He Bo

  • Detail of work

  • Morse code

  • In exhibition, New York Red Hook Lab, 2019


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