Liquid Violence, 2018 

Forensic Oceanography

Video installation

Since 2011, Forensic Oceanography has been critically investigating the spatial and aesthetic conditions that have turned the Mediterranean into a militarised border zone, leading to the death of large numbers of migrants. Liquid Violence (2018) brings together three investigations conducted over this period. Liquid Traces (2014) charts the trajectory of a boat abandoned at sea during NATO’s 2011 military intervention in Libya; Death by Rescue (2016) reconstructs the lethal effects of the decision made by Italy and the EU to cut back search and rescue activities at sea; Mare Clausum (2018) concerns the two-pronged strategy currently implemented by the Italian government to close off the sea: on the one hand, criminalising the rescue activities of NGOs, on the other, supporting Libyan actions to prevent and intercept departures. Each of these works seeks to analyse and contest a particular mode of border violence, all the while drawing a political anatomy of the fluctuating patterns of border control and (non-)assistance at sea, and their dramatic consequences for the lives of migrants.