Gideon Schwartzman
A Few Thin Things

In Plain Sight

    In Peter Sloterdijk’s Terror from the Air, Sloterdijk claims that the 20th century does not truly begin until April 22nd 1915. On this day the Germans initiated the first ever chemical warfare attack on enemy troops. The string of chemical attacks which followed not only targeted environments, but more importantly removed the aggressor from the immediate location in which the deadly act of war occurs. Aggression from a far. Aggression from the air!

    According to Sloterdijk, these initial acts of German gas bombings would ultimately send the century down a spiraling path of terrorism, environmental targeting, and a subsequent need for responsive design. What possible means of defense do our constructed environments have in an increasingly violent world?

    This proposal offers a city in disguise. Borrowing the strategy of razzle dazzle, this constructed city aims to confuse and frustrate the current state of machine vision. While the ships of the First World War used the super graphic (dazzle) to distort shape, this urban proposal utilizes the graphic elements of stripes, dual tone color, and perspectival shifts to camouflage. The dazzle pattern conflates foreground and background into a thin surface. In elevation the city is lost, in axonometric the city is distorted, and in drone view the target is hidden in plain sight.