Panopticon_frontier 601

Fotos: Pep Herrero i Núria d’Asprer
[the device]

If we return to Foucault but also Agamben, the device that operates the machinery of the disciplinary society as that of institutional violence, is a set of architectural constructions, at the same time that laws and regulations, philosophical statements that are filtered through education , the media ... and that included what was said and what was not said.

In Panopticon_frontier 601, I wanted to create a body to body with the visitor, but where the other body is absent, we will find ourselves in an empty space, where we will not know very well why we are here.

The other, the invisible ... was referred to by small visual, textual samples, their voices at the borders, their breaths, their hearts beating.

Visitors will have the experience they want to have, depending on the time they decide to stay inside the empty space and within the panopticon itself ...


1- [dimensions]

In a conversation, two sub-Saharan teenagers narrated their difficult and traumatic crossing by boat from the African continent to the Spanish coast. One of them made a descriptive and fluid account; the other, added to the narrative dimensions that gave a plus of reality and rawness. These dimensions are what serve as a contrast to the silence of the images and the noise of the borders.
2- [the booth of the Germans]

Within the project The German booth (the Gestapo bunker installed at the beginning of the World War in Portbou) is the starting point to refer to class, racist and borderline violence.

This bunker is located on the 601 border between Spain and France. Frontier lived, frontier that still maintains the silence of violence.

This “natural” panopticon concentrates its effectiveness in the articulation of the axis of seeing without being seen (fundamental in any surveillance system).

But all of this is transgressed in these artificial images, built with a certain logic of overlays and with the will to discontinuity.

A natural, bucolic, innocent landscape? Not at all, it is a landscape that can even include the presence of those who do not think they are accomplices, but maybe they are ...

De magazime TIME OUT say: “the landscape is amazing and the stories of the Nazis have a lot of circulation, so a selfie will make us look like authentic “culturetas” ... and if it is tramontana, the drama of photography is assured” ...

However, the complexity of the device itself has exclusion mechanisms. Not everyone can be part of this game / network of knowledge / power in which our society is immersed. Entire communities in extinction, thousands of bodies excluded from the sole possibility of survival are invisible and disappeared ... for which Agamben tells us that the true arcane, the true mystery, is not the State, but the government. It is not the legislator and the Law, it is the police and the state of exception.

Thus, in this way we can also understand why the device in the State of Exception is not only a mechanism of subjectivation, but also of the subjectivation of the subject, its absolute denial.

Finally we could say that the enormous sophistication of the panopticon-cybernetic society has given way to the "simple" border armor. No metaphors, only retaining walls and death.
Exposed in
La Virreina Centre de la Imatge. Barcelona. 2019