Throughout 2012, Irish photographer Richard Mosse and his collaborators, Trevor Tweeten and Ben Frost, traveled the Democratic Republic of Congo, taking video and photographs of rebel groups with Kodak Aerochrome film. Developed for the military in the 1940s, the infrared film captures greens in shades of pink and red and became popular in the psychedelic culture of the 1960s.
The resulting photographs, currently installed in Ireland’s exhibition at the Venice Biennale and available from Aperture as a book and a limited edition box set, constitute a series that rethinks the tension between a photograph’s violent or disturbing content and its aesthetic virtue. As noted at a discussion at New York-based art collective Triple Canopy, “Mosse makes vivid how cruelty can be sublime and violence can ravage or remake a landscape in ways we may politically detest but also find visually arresting, even beautiful.”
Film and all photographs are © Richard Mosse