Reflections on Forensic Oceanography’s investigations into border violence at the EU’s maritime frontiers through an aesthetic lens
With Charles Heller ( Graduate Institute, Geneva,) and Lorenzo Pezzani (Goldsmiths)
In this presentation, Charles Heller will reflect on Forensic Oceanography (FO)’s investigations into the shifting modalities of border violence operating at the EU’s maritime frontiers through an aesthetic lens. Heller will argue that the policing of illegalised migration by EU states generates distinct conditions of (in)visibility and (in)audibility, but that these are also shaped, transformed, and contested by multiple other actors, such as migrants’ themselves, NGOs, artists and architects. Together, these actors shape the maritime frontier’s aesthetic regime which affects the way borders operate. Through several cases FO has reconstructed over the last 10 years, Heller will demonstrate that to contest the violence of borders, one must also challenge the boundaries of what can be seen and heard. These boundaries however are highly ambivalent and in constant flux and demand careful positioning.
This event is associated with our Spatial Practice and Architecture research cluster. Work within this cluster is primarily carried out by staff and students in The Centre for Research Architecture and is organised around practice-led research that investigates the urgent political conditions of our time. Our goal is to provide practitioners from a wide range of backgrounds with tools for undertaking spatial research and critical analysis using various investigative methods alongside on-the-ground fieldwork. In conjunction with our longstanding commitments to human rights advocacy and social justice work, our researchers also engage with related ecological, legal, and techno-scientific issues.
Dr Charles Heller is a researcher and filmmaker whose work has a long-standing focus on the politics of mediation and migration within and at the borders of Europe. He is currently Research Associate at the Centre on Conflict, Development and Peacebuilding (CCDP), Graduate Institute, Geneva. Together with Lorenzo Pezzani, in 2011 Heller co-founded Forensic Oceanography, a collaborative project based at Goldsmiths that has developed innovative methodologies to document the conditions that lead to migrants’ deaths at sea, and which has generated human rights reports, articles and videos that have been exhibited internationally.
Lorenzo Pezzani is an architect and researcher in the Centre for Research Architecture at Goldsmiths, where he currently convenes the MA studio in Forensic Architecture. His work explores the spatial politics, visual cultures and political ecologies of migration and borders.
Image: Film still from Mare Clausum – The Sea Watch vs Libyan Coast Guard Case, Forensic Oceanography and Forensic Architecture, 28 min, 2018.
This event is associated with our Spatial Practice and Architecture research cluster and is part of the Visual Cultures Public Programme Spring 2021.
Dates & times
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|14 Jan 2021||5:00pm - 7:00pm|
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