This Friday I am leading a workshop titled "Decoding Military Landscapes" with Javier Arbona and Bryan Finoki. The aim of this workshop is to find a means for bringing awareness of invisible militarizations of space in the cities we live in.
But what do we mean by militarization of everyday space? A simple example and one which I relentlessly documented as I traveled last year is the baggage screening machine at airports. An airport is a highly militarized space as we are all flying around in potential missiles. We are familiar with the routine of removing metals, isolating liquids, etc etc. so that our bodies may pass through into the sterilized security zone of the airport's interior.
The fact that we have become so neutralized to, and even appreciative of this routine, is bewildering. It is the contemporary 'walled city'. Is the baggage security check our only means of defense? Hardly. Part of the agenda of this workshop is to ask first how far does the military penetrate into our daily lives and then how do we document and archive this?
In this particular example, how is the spatial experience of passage through this 'wall' mediated by this security check? What is the literal experience of the check itself, and does it constitute a military appropriation of private space? It is my desire to archive how these spaces have been militarized through the recording of sound.
In this particular example, a fork which was part of a camping set that I bought at the Kathmandu outfitters in New Zealand is confiscated by security at the airport in Athens.
The recording begins with the mic setup in my bag, and you then pass to the interior of the screening machine, and then you are inspected by the security officer. As you can probably guess, it was a much-loved fork. Listen: