© TOKYO PHOTOGRAPHIC ART MUSEUM and OSHIMA Kenichiro

Urban-Data Complex

Urban-Data Complex

Yebisu International Festival for Art and Alternative Visions 2017: Multiple Future

Tokyo, 10 – 26 February 2017

Can architecture provide new tools of political analysis and intervention?

Urban-Data Complex presented two recent investigations at the Yebisu International Festival for Art and Alternative Visions 2017 that encapsulate the idea of reading and reconstructing violence through the city form.

The first investigation, Rafah: Black Friday, was undertaken in close partnership with Amnesty International, this investigation focuses on four days of the summer 2014 attack on Gaza by the Israeli military. The controversial Hannibal directive resulted in the heaviest civilian death toll of the entire conflict, and the extensive destruction of Rafah’s built environment.

The second investigation explored through this exhibition was Air Strike Atimah. This case used clips found in social media websites online to investigate three air strikes on 8 March 2015, near the town of Atimah in Syria and the displaced persons camp of the same name, both abutting the Northern border to Turkey.

Videos and images from the investigations were accompanied by bomb cloud models. A bomb cloud is made of everything a building once was: concrete, plaster, soil, glass, flesh, and is thus architecture in gaseous form, an event as monument that exists for seven to nine minutes. If modelled correctly, it can also provide valuable evidence in legal cases. Forensic Architecture are able to use mainstream and social media images of these clouds to create 3D models, which help to approximate the date and precise location of bomb strikes, aiding human rights agencies to compile valuable reports about conflict zones.

Stills from the exhibition by OSHIMA Kenichiro © TOKYO PHOTOGRAPHIC ART MUSEUM

Contributors

  • Eyal Weizman
  • Christina Varvia
  • Nick Axel
  • Francesco Sebregondi
  • Camila E. Sotomayor
  • Vere Van Gool
  • Shourideh C. Molavi
  • Gustav A. Toftgaard
  • Dorette Panagiotopoulou
  • Jamon Van Den Hoek
  • Rosario Güiraldes
  • Hania Halabi
  • Jacob Burns
  • Mohammed Abdullah
  • Kent Klich
  • Ana Naomi de Sousa
  • Susan Schuppli
  • Chris Cobb-Smith

The satellite image is produced from NASA's Landsat sattelite. Shades of green highlight healthy forest and shades of violate show cleared land. The image shows Indigenous territories being dispossessed through expansion of Palm oil plantations.

Ape Law

Ape Law

3rd Istanbul Design Biennial, Istanbul

22 October – 20 November 2016

Ape Law examines human-induced environmental violence on other species. Utilising the example of Sandra, the first ape in the world to be granted human rights by an Argentine criminal appeals court in 2015, the exhibit asks whether tropical forest fires can be legally recognised as acts of mass murder against the orangutans inhabiting them. A new kind of forensic archaeology tracks their fate by monitoring signs of their temporary architecture in the treetops.

This exhibition is organised by Forensic Architecture in collaboration with FIBAR: Baltasar Garzón, m7red and Irendra Radjawali (United Kingdom, Spain, Brazil, Argentina).

Selected views of the exhibition: © Forensic Architecture

Contributors

  • Eyal Weizman
  • Paulo Tavares
  • Samaneh Moafi
  • Christina Varvia
  • Nabil Ahmed
  • Sophie Springer
  • Lorenzo Pezzani
  • Jason Men
  • Nichola Czyz

 

 

A World Of Fragile Parts

A World Of Fragile Parts

La Biennale di Venezia 2016, Venice

28 May – 27 November 2016

In A World of Fragile Parts, a special project running from 28 May – 27 November 2016 in the Applied Arts Pavilion, La Biennale di Venezia and the V&A explore the threats facing the preservation of global heritage sites and how the production of copies can aid in the preservation of cultural artefacts.

 A World of Fragile Parts, is organized by La Biennale di Venezia chaired by Paolo Baratta, in collaboration with the V&A Museum, London. Curated by Brendan Cormier.

Selected Views Of The Exhibition: © Andrea Avezzù, courtesy of La Biennale di Venezia

Contributors

  • Eyal Weizman
  • Christina Varvia
  • Stefan Laxness
  • Satellite Studio

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Reporting From The Front

Reporting From The Front

La Biennale di Venezia 2016, Venice

28 May – 27 November 2016

“We would like the Biennale Architettura 2016 to offer a new point of view … Given the complexity and variety of challenges that architecture has to respond to, REPORTING FROM THE FRONT will be about listening to those that were able to gain some perspective and consequently are in the position to share some knowledge and experiences with those of us standing on the ground.” – Alejandro Aravena

In this exhibition, Forensic Architecture presents elements from four recent investigations. Undertaken at different scales, these cases extend from the micro-analysis of a single ruin from a drone strike in Miranshah, Pakistan, to an urban analysis of the city of Rafah in Gaza under Israeli attack; the death of refugees and migrants in the Mediterranean Sea, to the environmental violence along the shifting climatic frontiers of desertification and deforestation.

While architecture adds an essential method of investigation, forensics demands of architects the closest attention to the materiality of the built environment and its media representations. It also challenges architectural analysis to be performed publicly and politically in the most antagonistic of forums.

The 15th International Architecture Exhibition, titled REPORTING FROM THE FRONT, is directed by Alejandro Aravena and organised by La Biennale di Venezia chaired by Paolo Baratta.

Selected views of the exhibition: © Forensic Architecture

Contributors

  • Eyal Weizman
  • Christina Varvia
  • Paulo Tavares
  • Charles Heller
  • Lorenzo Pezzani
  • Samaneh Moafi
  • Hana Rizvanolli
  • Ariel Caine
  • Ana Naomi De Sousa
  • Susan Schuppli
  • Steffen Kramer
  • Francesco Sebregondi
  • Nick Axel
  • Jacob Burns
  • Blake Fisher
  • Reisner Beeliz
  • Samir Harb
  • Zahara Hussain
  • Shourideh Molavi
  • Jamon Van Der Hoek
  • Hania Halabi
  • Vere Van Gool
  • Camila Solomayor
  • Rosario Guiraldes
  • Mohammed Abdullah
  • Tom Tlalim
  • Giulia Bruno
  • Jan Klesswetter
  • Giuseppe Ileasi
  • Armin Linke
  • Alina Schmuch

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Constellation.s

constellation.s

Arc en rêve centre d’architecture, Bordeaux

2 June – 25 September 2016

Constellation.s is a project devoted to new ways of inhabiting the world. Given the global changes that disrupt current lives,  constellation.s  outlines the individual and collective initiatives that draw prospects, given the challenges of tomorrow. Faced with fear, isolationism,  and extremism, constellation.s invites critical thinking to understand the world in which we live in. Bringing together a multidisciplinary view from social sciences, philosophy, architecture and business- which reflect the present time. An appointment with the intelligible new conditions of human habitation; with practices that take the risk to make sense of the future; an opportunity to share the innovation process capable of imagining new ways of inhabiting the world.

Commissioner arc en rêve architecture center Michel Lussault, scientific director Francine Fort , Michel Jacques artistic direction

Selected Views Of The Exhibition: © Arc en rêve – centre d’architecture

Contributors

  • Eyal Weizman
  • Christina Varvia
  • Satellite Studio

Press

Publications

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Burden Of Proof

 BURDEN OF PROOF

Photographers’ Gallery, London

2 October – 10 January 2016

Burden of Proof: The Construction of Visual Evidence examines the way photographic images have been harnessed as evidence in instances of crimes or acts of violence suffered by individuals or groups.

The exhibition presents eleven case studies spanning the period from the invention of ‘metric’ photography of crime scenes in the 19th century to the reconstruction of a drone attack in Pakistan in 2012 using digital and satellite technologies. These offer an analysis of the historical and geopolitical contexts in which the images appeared, as well as their purpose, production process and dissemination.

“A forensic delineation of how photography has been used as evidence of war crimes and acts of violence…present(s) a catalogue of destruction on a scale that even oral testimony cannot hope to equal…haunting” – Sean O’ Hagan, The Guardian

Curated by Diane Dufour

Co-produced by LE BAL, in Paris, The Photographers’ Gallery, in London and the Nederlands Fotomuseum, in Rotterdam.

Selected Views Of The Exhibition: © The Photographers’ Gallery | Kate Elliott

Contributors

  • Eyal Weizman
  • Christina Varvia

Press

  • Culture Whisper, 24 August 2015
  • Aesthetica, 27 August 2015
  • The Guardian, 8 September 2015
  • RA Blog, 2 October 2015
  • Wallpaper*, 2 October 2015
  • The Telegraph, 2 October 2015
  • Disphotic, 5 October 2015
  • BBC Culture, 7 October 2015
  • Galleries Now, 28 October 2015
  • Spectator, 31 October 2015
  • Cent, 6 November 2015
  • Creative Review, 25 November 2015
  • Wired, 14 December 2015
  • Time Out, 5 January 2016

Publications

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Up In The Air

ARTEFACT 2016 | UP IN THE AIR

STUCK Kunstencentrum, Leuven

9 February – 21 February 2016

 Artefact 2016: Up in the Air,  aimed to investigate the poetic, political and economic parameters that guide our relation to airspace. The spiritual dimensions that seem to be closely related to an ‘up-there’, the hopes and dreams for which we turn our gaze up, the attempts to understand the intangible and sometimes invisible stand in stark contrast to the more practical political and economic approaches that organize and regulate our use of air space in areas such as transportation, scanning and surveillance, and air quality control.

Curated by Karen Verschooren

Artefact is an initiative of the Province Vlaams-Brabant i.c.w. Stad Leuven-Supported by KU Leuven in the context of the policy guideline ‘art and science’.

Selected Views Of The Exhibition: © Kristof Vrancken

Contributors

  • Lawrence Abu Hamdan
  • Nabil Ahmed
  • Maayan Amir
  • Anthropocene Observatory (Anselm Franke, Armin Linke, Territorial Agency/John Palmesino and Ann-Sofi Rönnskog)
  • Jacob Burns

Press

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Forensis at PROA

FORENSIS

Fundación Proa (PROA), Buenos Aires

25 September – 31 January 2016

Foundacion Proa presented the Forensis exhibition in Buenos Aires, an exhibition of work by multidisciplinary research team Forensic Architecture, which specialises in revealing and investigating the political and social circumstances in which contemporary conflicts occur.

Past,current and new scientific and technological methodologies are used by the group of architects, artists and filmmakers – who study areas where the social and urban fabric is altered by political and social conflicts.

The contemporary viewer often fails to locate or respond to the complex global mapping of this. The exhibition Forensis showcased seven projects from different parts of the world, attempting to build a global view through advanced technologies and everyday tools from our environment. Returning to the concept of ‘Forensis’- a public forum, the exhibition attempts to recreate this concept for the visitor by creating a space for reflection that enables a live reading of current events. Through images from the public domain comprising of; satellite images, 3D videos,professional photographs as well as media uploaded onto the web by anonymous citizens, the viewer is challenged directly.

Forensis brought forth unique and original features into the realm of the exhibition, allowing one to reflect on the current world through the eyes of an international team of specialists from Goldsmiths University of London.

Both in content and in form, Forensis questions contemporary art practices, and proposes a debate on the place of the modern subject in various global conflicts where social, cultural, spatial and material spheres cross.

 
 
 

Curated by Anselm Franke, Eyal Weizman and Rosario Güiraldes

FORENSIS is a co-production by Fundacion Proa, Haus der Kulturen der Welt, funded by the Capital Cultural Fund, and by Forensic Architecture, ERC-funded research project based at Goldsmiths, University of London.

Selected Views Of The Exhibition: ©Jorge Miño, Fundación Proa

Contributors

  • Lawrence Abu Hamdan
  • Nabil Ahmed
  • Maayan Amir
  • Anthropocene Observatory (Anselm Franke, Armin Linke, Territorial Agency/John Palmesino and Ann-Sofi Rönnskog)
  • Jacob Burns
  • Gabriel Cuéllar
  • DAAR (Alessandro Petti, Sandi Hilal, Eyal Weizman)
  • Forensic Oceanography (Charles Heller, Lorenzo Pezzani)
  • Grupa Spomenik (Damir Arsenijević, Ana Bezić, Pavle Levi, Jelena Petrović, Branimir Stojanović, Milica Tomić)
  • Ayesha Hameed
  • Samir Harb
  • Helene Kazan
  • Thomas Keenan
  • Steffen Kraemer
  • Adrian Lahoud
  • Model Court (Lawrence Abu Hamdan, Sidsel Meineche Hansen, Lorenzo Pezzani, Oliver Rees)
  • Modelling Kivalina (Andrea Bagnato, Daniel Fernández Pascual, Helene Kazan, Hannah Meszaros Martin, Alon Schwabe)
  • Gerald Nestler
  • Godofredo Pereira
  • Nicola Perugini
  • ScanLAB Projects (Matthew Shaw, William Trossell)
  • Susan Schuppli
  • Francesco Sebregondi
  • Shela Sheikh
  • SITU Research (Robert Beach, McKenna Cole, Therese Diede, Akshay Mehra, Charles-Antoine Perrault, Bradley Samuels, Xiaowei Wang)
  • Caroline Sturdy Colls
  • Paulo Tavares
  • Srdjan Jovanovic Weiss/NAO
  • Eyal Weizman
  • Ines Weizman

PROA

  • Cintia Mezza
  • Cecilia Jaime
  • SPIN
  • Guillermo Goldschmidt
  • Soledad Oliva
  • Pablo Zaefferer
  •  Josefina Insausti
  • Víctor López Zumelzu
  • Paulina Guarnieri
  • Rosario García Martínez
  • Camila Villarruel
  • Laura Ferreiros
  • Agostina Gabanetta
  • Noemí Aira
  • Juan Carlos Urrutia
  • Cora Papic
  • Javier Aparicio
  • Leandro Barzabal
  •  Ale Giorgga
  • Hernán Salvo
  • Hernán Torres

Press

 

 

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Forensis

FORENSIS

Haus der Kulturen der Welt (HKW), Berlin

15 March – 5 May 2014

How do mortal remains, DNA samples, and satellite images become forensic evidence? What role do imaging techniques and methods of representation play in the investigation of crimes or political acts of violence? How are objects made to speak?

The exhibition FORENSIS and the accompanying conference will explore the procedures, tools, and spatial arrangements used in forensics, as well as the potential of a new aesthetic-political practice. With this exhibition, the Haus der Kulturen der Welt devotes itself to the rapidly expanding field of artistic research and knowledge production and, through diverse examples, examines the interleaving of science, media, and the political sphere.

Curated by Anselm Franke and Eyal Weizman.

FORENSIS is a co-production by Haus der Kulturen der Welt, funded by the Capital Cultural Fund, and by Forensic Architecture, ERC-funded research project based at Goldsmiths, University of London.

In the framework of “The Anthropocene Project” (2013–14)

Contributors

  • Lawrence Abu Hamdan
  • Nabil Ahmed
  • Maayan Amir
  • Anthropocene Observatory (Anselm Franke, Armin Linke, Territorial Agency/John Palmesino and Ann-Sofi Rönnskog)
  • Jacob Burns
  • Gabriel Cuéllar
  • DAAR (Alessandro Petti, Sandi Hilal, Eyal Weizman)
  • Forensic Oceanography (Charles Heller, Lorenzo Pezzani)
  • Grupa Spomenik (Damir Arsenijević, Ana Bezić, Pavle Levi, Jelena Petrović, Branimir Stojanović, Milica Tomić)
  • Ayesha Hameed
  • Samir Harb
  • Helene Kazan
  • Thomas Keenan
  • Steffen Kraemer
  • Adrian Lahoud
  • Model Court (Lawrence Abu Hamdan, Sidsel Meineche Hansen, Lorenzo Pezzani, Oliver Rees)
  • Modelling Kivalina (Andrea Bagnato, Daniel Fernández Pascual, Helene Kazan, Hannah Meszaros Martin, Alon Schwabe)
  • Gerald Nestler
  • Godofredo Pereira
  • Nicola Perugini
  • ScanLAB Projects (Matthew Shaw, William Trossell)
  • Susan Schuppli
  • Francesco Sebregondi
  • Shela Sheikh
  • SITU Research (Robert Beach, McKenna Cole, Therese Diede, Akshay Mehra, Charles-Antoine Perrault, Bradley Samuels, Xiaowei Wang)
  • Caroline Sturdy Colls
  • Paulo Tavares
  • Srdjan Jovanovic Weiss/NAO
  • Eyal Weizman
  • Ines Weizman

Related publication

FORENSIS: The Architecture of Public Truth

Edited by Forensic Architecture
Sternberg Press, 2014

Related conference

The Architecture of Public Truth

Conference at HKW (Berlin)
15 – 16 March 2014

Press

Editorial

Forensis is Latin for “pertaining to the forum” and is the root of the term forensics. The roman forum was a multi-dimensional space of negotiation and truth-finding in which humans and objects participated together in politics, law, and the economy. With the advent of modernity, the meaning of forensics shifted to refer increasingly to the domain of law, and particularly to the use of medicine—and later science more generally—in the courts. Today, forensics is central to the ways by which states police and govern their subjects, and, through its popular representations, has become a defining feature of contemporary culture.

By returning to the wider concept of forensis, this exhibition seeks to unlock the potential of forensics as a political practice. Inverting the direction of the forensic gaze, it seeks to designate a field of action in which individuals and independent organizations can detect, represent, and confront abuses of power by states and corporations in situations that have a bearing upon political struggle, violent conflict, and climate change.

This exhibition presents the work of the architects, artists, filmmakers, and theorists who make up the Forensic Architecture project at the Centre for Research Architecture at Goldsmiths, University of London, as well as that of its close collaborators and guests. It includes forensic investigations that seek to provide new kinds of evidence for international prosecution teams, political organizations, NGOs, and the United Nations (these interventions are designated in the exhibition by the term CASE). Additionally, the show features critical examinations of the history and present status of forensics in rearticulating notions of public truth (designated by the term FILE).

As it explores the development and transformation of forensis, the exhibition traverses multiple scales: from the human body, through buildings, territories, and seas, all the way up to the scale of the planet—the ultimate forensic object that human-induced change, articulated by the concept of the anthropocene, has transformed into both a construction site and a ruin.

Selected installation views from the opening of Forensis, 14 March 2014. © Laura Fiorio/Haus der Kulturen der Welt
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Mengele’s Skull


 

Selected views of the exhibition:

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