Italian artist Rä di Martino's first UK solo exhibition presents a new body of work inspired by her research into the history of 'dummy tanks'.
It is a little known fact that such devices, variously made out of a range of rudimentary materials such as wood and fabric, have been used throughout the history of modern warfare. Drawing on and appropriating archive sources, she examines the peculiar status of these mock-machines.
The realities of war demanded the creation of a fiction. Armies have employed these fake tanks in order to cheaply achieve a real tactical advantage by deceiving the enemy looking down from above in planes, helicopters and now via drones and even satellites. Despite this introduction of fiction into the reality of war, di Martino identified that in a bizarre contrast filmmakers have predominately shunned stage props where tanks are concerned and instead opted for the real thing.
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