Casey's Pawns Victoria & Albert Museum
Materials: Lambda colour photograph backed on Dibond (Each photograph is an edition of 7 + 3AP)
Dimensions: 120 x 180 cm
Exhibition history: 2004 Victoria & Albert Museum London, UK
Courtesy: Lucy + Jorge Orta
Commissioned by the Victoria & Albert Museum, this emotional two-hour performance Casey's Pawns was held on the symbolic date of 25th June 2004, five days before the hand-over of sovereignty to the Iraqi government and the start of the withdrawal of US and allied forces. For the performance, Lucy Orta invited fifty volunteers to stage a passive peace demonstration in protest against the 2nd Gulf War's invasion of the town of Fallujah. The immobile figures stood silently meditating the future fate of Iraq and its citizens in the museum galleries amidst the tombs, sepulchres and war trophies from historical battles and combats. They were dressed in gold-printed combat suits inscribed with graphic signifiers, their faces covered with hoods synonymous with those worn by war prisoners. The performance was photographed and documented by the film-maker Roman Coppola.