the cost of war

The real cost of the Iraq war was paid by civilians who were killed in the crossfire.

In this project, a light flickers for each civilian death during the 2003–11 conflict in Iraq. There are two lights: one representing civilian lives taken by the American coalition, and another that flickers when a civilian was killed by opposing forces.

worked with: data, electricity, open-source hardware, processing, light & space, css, print.
data source: iraqbodycount.
with help & advice from: charlotte jarvis, lucio sgrigna, ian gabb, martin salmon.


Every second represents one day from the Iraq War; so, every hour the lights flicker as many times as civilian deaths during 9 years of the conflict (2003–11). a robust, compact box controls the lights. the installation is plug-and-play, and can be set up within minutes. it can be placed in almost any kind of space because light, being amorphous, fills up whatever space it is given (example).


automated workflow to parse & merge large data-sets, render html, style it, and produce a printable book. self-published and hand-bound. collaboration with rohit sharma.