The exhibition presents a range of works related to this project, including neon sculptures, drawings, text works, source materials, a window installation of drawings on cardboard boxes, and a special edition of 30 posters made from unbound sections of the book.
The book, All the World’s Fighter Planes 2006, is a compilation of found newspaper images representing every type of fighter aircraft currently in commission anywhere in the world. The name of each plane is listed on the front and back covers, 170 in all. The book compiles newspaper clippings of each of the different aircraft models. The clippings (as well as the aircraft) come in a variety of shapes and sizes, both small and large, some cut following the contours of the planes, others ripped carelessly from their source, some scattered haphazardly across the open pages, others in full page close-up. At times, fragments of text captions hint at a narrative context and all the images show the aircraft in some form of action. But considered within the broader context of Banner’s other text-based works, the sequence of airplane images themselves make up a kind of deadpan narrative in the absence of any textual framework. The book also creates a gripping tension between the everyday low-tech contents-
newspaper clippings-and the subject depicted: the latest high tech killing machines. And finally, there is the allusion to a twisted construction of nature: page after page, the images of the aircraft begin to evoke monstrous mechanized birds, insects, flying beasts, fantastical dragons. Referring back to the aircraft names on the covers, it is hard not to notice the prevalence of the same: Hornet, Sea Hawk, Panther, Cougar, Warthog, Osprey, Black Hawk, etc.
In addition to the exhibition and book launch at Printed Matter, Fiona Banner will also be showing at Tracy Williams, Ltd., at two separate locations: “Nude” at 313 West 4th St. will run March 8 – April 22, and “Parade” at 462 Greenwich St. at Desbrosses St. will run March 10 – March 31.