Trevor Paglen, CLOUD #135 Hough Lines, 2019, dye sublimation print, 48" × 65" (121.9 cm × 165.1 cm), Edition of 5 + 2 AP © Trevor Paglen

Trevor Paglen


© Paglen Studio


b. 1974, Camp Springs, Maryland

Trevor Paglen is known for investigating the invisible through the visible, with a wide-reaching approach that spans image making, sculpture, investigative journalism, writing, engineering, and numerous other disciplines.

The clandestine and the hidden are revealed in series such as The Black Sites, The Other Night Sky, and Limit Telephotography in which the limits of vision are explored through the histories of landscape photography, abstraction, Romanticism, and technology. Paglen’s investigation into the epistemology of representation can be seen in his Symbology and Code Names series which utilize text, video, object, and image to explore questions surrounding military culture and language. Among his chief concerns are learning how to see the historical moment we live in and developing the means to imagine alternative futures.

Paglen has had numerous one-person exhibitions, including at the Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego (2019); Frankfurter Kunstverein, Frankfurt (2015); Eli & Edythe Broad Art Museum, Michigan State University, East Lansing (2015); Protocinema Istanbul (2013); Van Abbemuseum, Eindhoven, Netherlands (2013); and Vienna Secession (2010). He has participated in group exhibitions at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (2008, 2010, 2018); Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía, Madrid (2014); The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York (2012); Tate Modern, London (2010), and numerous other institutions.


Trevor Paglen, Image Operations. Op.10, 2018, Single Channel 4K UHD Color Video Projection, 5.0 Dolby Surround Sound, 23 min, Edition of 3 + 1 AP © Trevor Paglen


Trevor Paglen, Untitled (Predator Drone), 2013, C-Print, 48 × 60" © Trevor Paglen, Courtesy of the Artist, Metro Pictures, New York, Altman Siegel, San Francisco


Trevor Paglen, NSA-Tapped Undersea Cables North Pacific Ocean, 2016, C-Print, 48 × 72" © Trevor Paglen, Courtesy of the Artist, Metro Pictures, New York, Altman Siegel, San Francisco


Trevor Paglen, From ‘Apple’ to ‘Anomaly’ (Pictures and Labels), Selections from the ImageNet dataset for object recognition, 2019, Photography, pins, labels Installation view, From ‘Apple’ to ‘Anomaly’ (Pictures and Labels), Barbican Centre - The Curve, London, September 2019 – February 2020, Photo by Max Colson © Trevor Paglen, Courtesy of the Artist and Barbican Centre - The Curve, London