|2021 EDITION / ARTISTS IN FOCUS / FORENSIC ARCHITECTURE|
Session by Nicholas Zembashi and Lawrence Abu Hamdan, members of Forensic Architecture.
Points of View. Agency in Counter-Perspectives (streaming)
"The idea of time can be reduced to a point of view: duration is made of transitory instances just as a straight line is made of points without depth"
— Paul Virilio, The Aesthetics of Disappearance (1980)
In its recounting, an event is made to spread across points in time. Each point allows a hazy glimpse that is diffracted by camera lenses, tear gas clouds, institutional frameworks, testimonial accounts, and fragmented clusters of data. Forensic Architecture develops methodologies to see beyond such thresholds to detection. With a focus on Machine Learning investigations, as well as biases inherent in split-second decisions, we shall move across the scales of police brutality and territorial violence to find agency in counter-perspectives.
Nicholas Zembashi joined Forensic Architecture in 2018 after completing his Part II at the Architectural Association. His research interests lie between architecture and media theory, and he uses speculation to design essays in space. His most recent work investigates how identity is bound by a landscape of media, and how classification in machine learning is an extension of discriminatory biases that define the identifying edges of an object. At Forensic Architecture Nicholas has worked on police brutality and state violence cases as well as research on the use of Machine Learning in investigative practice.
Natq: Conference with Lawrence Abu Hamdan (streaming)
Lawrence Abu Hamdan presents "Natq", a live audiovisual essay on the politics and possibilities of reincarnation. Through listening closely to "xenoglossy" (the impossible speech of reincarnated subjects), this performance explores a collectivity of lives who use reincarnation to negotiate their condition at the threshold of the law—people for whom injustices and violence have escaped the historical record due to colonial subjugation, corruption, rural lawlessness, and legal amnesty. In the piece, reincarnation is not a question of belief but a medium for justice.
The artist and sound researcher Lawrence Abu Hamdan, who also collaborates with Forensic Architecture, is the author of the artist's book [inaudible]: A Politics of Listening in 4 Acts. In 2018 he received the Abraaj Group Art Prize (Dubai) and the Baloise Art Prize (Basel). His short film Rubber Coated Steel was awarded in Rotterdam in 2017. Abu Hamdan's works are part of numerous international museum collections, including MoMA, Guggenheim, Hammer L.A., Van AbbeMuseum, Centre Pompidou and Tate Modern.