USA Under Fire

Campaign website

www.usaunderfire.org

 

 

 

usa under fire

Client:
21xdesign

Art direction:
Dermot Mac Cormack
Patricia McElroy

Designer:
Dermot Mac Cormack
Patricia McElroy

Illustrator:
Dermot Mac Cormack
Julie Lam
Patricia McElroy

Development:
Dermot Mac Cormack
Julie Lam

This site, begun in 2019, evolved from the series of gun violence-related posters (which you can view below) which began as a response to mass shootings in 2016. This interactive, online series, is a natural extension of that initial project and is a comprehensive record of the mass shootings that occurred in the US in a single year, 2018. Each flag is a visual record of those people, from all across the country, that were either killed or injured by guns. Visitors to the site can click on the flag images to learn more about each incident. All the posters in this site were generated, using real-time data, along with predefined parameters that are used to create visual documentation of the state of mass shootings in the US. These statistics include numbers for injuries as well as deaths. Mass shootings are in the US are defined as including no less than 4 victims but do not include the shooter.

In terms of inspiration for aesthetic of this site, two artists that I have long admired are Allan McCollum and Sol Lewitt, both of whom explore the possibilities of repetition,  change, and mutations in their work and became for me a source of inspiration for the aesthetic, and functioning of this site. The sheer scale of replications as a means to drive home a point is at the core of this site.

While Covid-19 has prevented a physical showing of these posters, we are exploring digital means of showcasing versions of these posters to a broader audience this year. For the future, we are also exploring expanding the time frame of the project to include 2019 and possibly 2020 and we are researching the possibility of using machine code to generate additional posters and content. 

san bernadino poster
Istanbul poster
Orlando poster
parkland poster

The genesis for this project began with the creation of individual gun control-related posters, some of which are shown above. Initially, we had some international posters, centered around international terrorism, but we moved to focus solely on domestic gun violence, as we felt this was something we could contribute to and explore on a more personal level. As shown here, each poster revolves around a flag and uses bullet holes to either denote the total deaths occurred or else portray an approximation of the casualties. 

USA Under Fire example page

When users click on any given poster on the site, they can rollover the bullet holes, and view the name and ages of the victims, and on the right of each flag image, they can scroll down and read various in-depth news sources accounts of the actual shooting from around the country. 

USA under fire 5 rows of flags
USA under fire 5 rows of flags
USA under fire 5 rows of flags
USA under fire 5 rows of flags
USA under fire 5 rows of flags
USA under fire 5 rows of flags
USA under fire 5 rows of flags
USA under fire 5 rows of flags
USA under fire 5 rows of flags
USA under fire 5 rows of flags
USA under fire 5 rows of flags
USA under fire 5 rows of flags
USA under fire 5 rows of flags
USA under fire 5 rows of flags
USA under fire 5 rows of flags
USA under fire 5 rows of flags
USA under fire 5 rows of flags

As the website contains hundreds of mass shootings, it can be a little difficult to get a birds-eye view of the scope of the fatalities so, shown above are images of all the posters from the website. You can, of course, visit the actual website, and view the posters in your own time, and reflect on the extent of mass shootings in a single year. Incidentally, when viewed on a mobile device, you really get the sense of the overwhelming amount of mass shootings in a single year as you endlessly scroll down on your phone.

 

RECOGNITION:

Several of the posters shown here and elsewhere on this site have received numerous awards and been exhibited both nationally and internationally. Please view the poster section here, to view those winning gun violence posters.

 

Ensō

Performance & Installations