The 1,000 Drones Project - A Participatory Memorial, invites the public to create a small scale, papercraft replica of a General Atomics MQ-1 Predator UAV (Unmanned Arial Vehicle) - a drone. Participants are asked to write the name of a civilian drone casualty upon the wings of the aircraft. The 1,000 paper drones created for this installation were made over the past three months by local students and volunteers working through the FSU Department of Art for the exhibition "Making Now - Art in Exchange" curated by Carolyn Henne. http://mofa.cvatd.fsu.edu/2014/01/making-now-open-for-exchange/
The Bureau of Investigative Journalism estimates that between 2004 and 2013, drone strikes in Pakistan killed between 2,536-3,577 people, of these, it is estimated that 411-884 civilians and 168-197 children have been killed. In Yemen, they estimate that of 287-423 killed by drone strikes, 30-71 civilians have been killed, including 6 children. According to a UN Agency report, in 2013, 45 civilians were killed in Afghanistan, a tripling of the number from the previous year.
The list of civilian drone casualties used for this memorial project comes from The Bureau of Investigative Journalism list of known victims from Pakistan. (http://www.thebureauinvestigates.com/). The names of victims from Yemen comes from a report issued by Alkarama “The United States War on Yemen: Drone Attacks” available at: http://en.alkarama.org/documents/ALK_USA-Yemen_Drones_SRCTwHR_4June2013_Final_EN.pdf
The names of civilian drone casualties from our wars in Afghanistan and Iraq does not exist – these victims are noted in this work as “unknown”.
This project is an adaptation of The 1,000 Cranes or “Senbazuru” tradition from Japan. This tradition holds that anyone who folds one thousand cranes will be granted a wish. Since World War II the tradition has been associated with the atomic attacks upon Nagasaki and Hiroshima - the folding of the cranes has become a wish for peace. Through the act of participating in this work of creative remembrance, the intention is for we, as Americans, to recognize and remember those innocents killed in our ongoing Global War on Terror.