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Ocula Conversation

Ruanne Abou-Rahme and Basel Abbas in Conversation

Fawz Kabra New York 18 January 2018

Ruanne Abou-Rahme and Basel Abbas. Courtesy the artists.

From their first audiovisual performances as Tashweesh (in collaboration with the musician and performer Boikutt), Ruanne Abou-Rahme and Basel Abbas' collaborative artistic practice has utilised sound and video to create visceral, heart-thumping and absorbing installations that are conceptually rooted in their present-day experiences. Using field recordings, archival footage, found material and text that they author or extract from various literature, Abou-Rahme and Abbas have developed a process-based methodology that unearths lesser-known narratives to subvert and complicate official canonical histories. The works—produced with layers of moving images, language and objects—expand and contract time and deconstruct and conflate disparate moments and artefacts.

Basel Abbas and Ruanne Abou-Rahme, The Incidental Insurgents: Unforgiving Years (Part 2, Chapter 3) (2012–2015). Exhibition view: Pluriversale I, Kölnischer Kunstverein, Cologne (4–29 November 2014). Photo: Alfred Jansen. Courtesy the artists and Kölnischer Kunstverein.

The Incidental Insurgents, a three-part project that was staged over three years between 2012 and 2015, is a defining work in the artists' practice, which—in the artists' words—'unfolds the story of a contemporary search for a new political language and imaginary.' The first chapter, The Part About the Bandits, pulls together four narratives that weave the stories of various protagonists from Roberto Bolaño's novel, The Savage Detectives; Victor Serge's memoirs from 1910s Paris, Abu Jildeh and Arameet and their gang of bandits who rebelled against the British in 1930s Palestine, along with Abou-Rahme and Abbas' own textual works which often inhabit a philosophical and critical voice, frequently referencing issues related to Palestine. This conflation of time and episodes in history highlights the anarchist—the underdog of political history—as the main official narrator.

Basel Abbas and Ruanne Abou-Rahme, The Incidental Insurgents: The Part about the Bandits (Part 1, Chapter 1) (2012–2015). Exhibition view: The Incidental Insurgents, Institute of Contemporary Art, University of Pennsylvania (4 February–22 March 2015). Courtesy the artists and Institute of Contemporary Art, University of Pennsylvania.

The first chapter's playful installation includes a selection of pinned images, a record player and a work desk cluttered with books, magazine cutouts and photographs along with a reverberating video of a landscape overlaid with pulsating text in both Arabic and English (characteristic of all their moving image works). The first installment spills over into the second chapter, Unforgiving Years, where the disjointed narrative is presented once more as an assembly of photographs, objects and various pinned images that ponder on the unfulfilled plans and ambitions of the incidental figures of the previous chapter. The last chapter, When the fall of the dictionary leaves all words lying in the street is a dizzying installation of video projections that fall on seven wooden watchtowers of varying sizes that cast long shadows across the space. The protagonists from earlier episodes withdraw, leaving behind shadows thrown onto a new landscape that takes over the space. The Incidental Insurgents has been exhibited in a number of exhibitions and biennials, including the 13th Istanbul Biennial (14 September–20 October 2013), Pluriversale I at Kölnischer Kunstverein (4–29 November 2014) and an eponymous exhibition at the Institute of Contemporary Art, University of Pennsylvania (4 February–22 March 2015).

Basel Abbas and Ruanne Abou-Rahme, The Incidental Insurgents: The Part about the Bandits (Part 1, Chapter 1) (2012–2015). Exhibition view: 13th Istanbul Biennial (14 September–20 October 2013). Courtesy the artists and Istanbul Biennial.

In this conversation, the artists talk about their most recent work, And Yet My Mask is Powerful (2016). This two-part project is made up of a five-channel video projection and installation of objects, including 3D-printed masks, wall projections, displays of books, dried plants and pine branches, images and drawings pinned on corkboards that stand on concrete blocks, as well as debris, burnt wood, rocks and remains of a house laid out on the floor. And Yet My Mask is Powerful borrows its title from Adrienne Rich's poem Diving into the Wreck, whose verses appear throughout the five-channel video. In reference to the Neolithic masks found in Palestine in the areas around Hebron and Jericho, and now kept in various private collections around the world, the artists produced their own copies of the masks using 3D printing, from online exhibition photographs. These objects feature throughout their installation and in the video footage, which captures young Palestinians returning to the sites of destroyed, and now occupied, Palestinian villages. The artists chronicle their returns to these sites of wreckage, overgrown with vegetation—documenting them as they walk, search and wear the masks throughout their journey. With the aim of providing a counter-narrative to the universalist myth of the masks as 'returning home' to Jerusalem to join other ancient artefacts in the Israel Museum, the artists take us into a contested territory.

And Yet My Mask is Powerful was recently printed as an artist book by Printed Matter in 2017. The project itself will be exhibited at Kunstverein in Hamburg between 3 February and 29 April 2018.

Basel Abbas and Ruanne Abou-Rahme, And Yet My Mask is Powerful (Part 1) (2016). Exhibition view: And Yet My Mask is Powerful, Alt Bomontiada, Istanbul (15 February–16 April 2017). Courtesy the artists and Alt Bomontiada.

You have explained that And Yet My Mask is Powerful 'asks what happens to people/place/things/materials when a living fabric is destroyed.' For the work, you go back to the destroyed villages in Palestine, exploring the wreck. What did you hope to achieve with this fieldwork?

And Yet My Mask is Powerful started from a point of acute urgency but also from a sense of paralysis in the face of extreme violence against entire communities and living fabrics, this paralysis is very much connected to a state of collective trauma, this state of being is something we have lived again and again in Palestine, when language and action fails you. As people and artists, we are living in a moment when entire living fabrics are being destroyed, and in And Yet My Mask is Powerful we were specifically thinking about the continued destruction in the last five years of Iraq, Syria and Palestine. For a very long time, we were unable to even really look towards it. What can be said or done in the face of unimaginable violence? The erasure of entire communities is a violence enacted not just on the individual and communal body but also to places and things. It's violence towards lived structures, vegetation and land. It's violence to a lived history, community and memory, and ultimately, it's violence enacted on our imaginary or sense of any futurity.

In Palestine, this history, and present violence, has been ongoing for 70 years. And at the very heart of it are the villages destroyed in 1948, of which there are at least 412 villages that were depopulated. But why they became significant to us in this moment is because we became aware—through the scholarship of Palestinian thinkers such as Esmail Nashif, Nasser Abourahme and Samera Esmeir, and activists who are friends—that groups of young Palestinians were making returns to the sites.

Basel Abbas and Ruanne Abou-Rahme, And Yet My Mask is Powerful (Part 1) (2016). Exhibition view: And Yet My Mask is Powerful, Alt Bomontiada, Istanbul (15 February–16 April 2017). Courtesy the artists and Alt Bomontiada.

Could you talk about the idea of return, or going back to the sites that you visit in And Yet My Mask is Powerful, and doing this with other young Palestinians?

What was most striking in the returns of these young Palestinians, and the scholarship around it, was the ways in which they were re-conceptualising and re-activating the idea of return. Something unexpected happens in these contemporary returns. The destroyed sites emerge not just as places of ruin or trauma, but appear full of an unmediated vitality. The young people making these trips treat the site as a living fabric once again. They reactivate the disused spaces, camp out on site, eat, sing, dance.

The destroyed site of a Palestinian village, the very site of erasure, becomes the very place from which to think about the incomplete nature of the colonial project. Your body now, in this space, refuses to be docile to colonial time and imaginary, and momentarily embodies a time of your own making. A time not located in past, present or the present-future—it exists in a virtuality. Even in its fractional nature, this moment is extremely potent, it activates a potentiality to become unbound from colonial time.

So, in this sense our returns are part of this larger movement of returns. Our work is not really operating on a fictional realm, but in a realm between actuality and virtuality—what is and what could be. We are always building upon sites of resistances that are already being activated. When we made our returns, we chose to do it with a group of young Palestinians who had never made the trips before; that collective act and activation is a large part of the work itself.

Basel Abbas and Ruanne Abou-Rahme, And Yet My Mask is Powerful (Part 1) (2016). Exhibition view: And Yet My Mask is Powerful, Alt Bomontiada, Istanbul (15 February–16 April 2017). Courtesy the artists and Alt Bomontiada.

The masks on which the work is based are thought to be the oldest masks in the world. How did you get from an image of these masks online, to one you drew up digitally and produced into 3D prints?

The masks are a really good example of how we allow things to enter the work through the research. Sometimes they become a major component in the project. We came across the oldest (known) masks to date while thinking of a particular stanza in Adrienne Rich's poem, which became critical to the whole project. In this stanza, she describes the dive into the sea for the wreck as a moment where she nearly loses consciousness but then she writes, 'and yet my mask is powerful / it pumps my blood with power', here she is referring to her scuba diving mask, which allows her to breathe under water, giving her the power she needs to go to the site of the wreck. We began thinking about this idea of the mask as something that allows you to be, to breathe and to act in environments where you should not be able to act or to survive.

We were already interested in the idea of anonymity as a political position/act in our previous project, The Incidental Insurgents, and of course when you think of masks in relation to Palestine, you think of the black ski masks people wear when they go out to confront the Israeli military. Because we were thinking about these ideas that are mediated and take on a digital/virtual embodiment, we began by doing an online image search of 'Palestine Masks'. The results were predictably widespread images of young Palestinians in ski masks, resisting soldiers. But there were also these images of what looked like pre-historic masks. We were, of course, immediately intrigued. These masks, most of which were by now in private or semi-private collections in Europe, America and Israel, were Neolithic masks dating back 9,000 years and, in fact, the oldest known masks to date. The Israel Museum in Jerusalem, which interestingly when it was built, was designed to look like the silhouette of an Arab village before 1948, had staged a very large exhibition for the masks in 2014.

Basel Abbas and Ruanne Abou-Rahme, And Yet My Mask is Powerful (Part 1) (2016). Exhibition view: And Yet My Mask is Powerful, Alt Bomontiada, Istanbul (15 February–16 April 2017). Courtesy the artists and Alt Bomontiada.

As we researched the masks, we discovered that most of them had been 'bought', taken or simply looted from areas in the occupied West Bank, mostly in the last 40 years apart from two, which had been taken in the 19th century. But what was most significant for us was how these Neolithic pre-historic masks were being used by the Museum and consequently the media to reinforce various mythologies of the State of Israel; the map and narrative that the museum produced render Palestine and Palestinians entirely invisible. The more we dug the more we needed to intervene into the contemporary myth-making of the state and to make our own claims on the masks. We had not been able to go to the exhibition—one half of this duo is unable to enter Jerusalem under the law of occupation—but we could experience the exhibition virtually on the museum's site. It became important for us to think about the masks as a living material that can both be activated, but also itself activate things. And that's how we arrived at this initial step of hacking the masks to make potentially infinite 3D copies of them.

Your work de-mythologises the aura of these masks by splicing them into the contemporary and presenting them in proximity to local plants, materials and artefacts. How would you describe the space you have opened up here through this treatment?

The work de-mythologises and decolonises the masks in several different ways. On one level, it is about rupturing the aura of the artefact as singular artefact by freeing it to be potentially infinite. This very much relates to our practice in Incidental Insurgents, which was about hacking archives and knowledge production to render everything an infinite copy that could travel anywhere and to anyone. Something that was deeply impacted by Aaron Swartz and the open guerilla manifesto, which obviously is coming out of a very long lineage of writers and activists. And what is critical in this practice is how we can resist the fossilisation of things, and with it, of course, history and memory—life itself. How can the artefact mutate or be freed from being a dead fossil to a living material that can be used by us now in a process of decolonisation? One of the masks was taken from the town of Al-Ram by an English physician in 1881. In his own narrative, he describes being chased by the villagers because they used the mask as an amulet. It turns out there was in fact a Neolithic site there. Potentially, this mask was being used across a span of thousands of years. The moment it was taken and placed in a private collection in England, it was not only fossilised, but positioned within a colonial narrative.

So, part of the work is to free this material and once more activate its latent powers. The masks were always about bending things and becoming the other by way of concealment, for us when we thought about the power of these archaic masks in a contemporary register we linked this concealment to forms of becoming anonymous and letting go of a certain 'subjectivity'. Anonymity as a way to move from just the singular to the common. And in this process of becoming anonymous the masks are used to conjure things into being. Each mask intended for a different performance, each mask imprinted with its own latent power.

In the project, we are unfolding that connection between the archaic and the contemporary. The 3D-printed Neolithic masks in the work are positioned in conversation with the black ski masks young Palestinians wear to conceal their faces during demonstrations against the Israeli military. For us, there is a clear resonance there in the way in which wearing the mask is a performative gesture of not just concealment but empowerment. This, for us, is also a form of return.

Basel Abbas and Ruanne Abou-Rahme, And Yet My Mask is Powerful (Part 1) (2016). Exhibition view: And Yet My Mask is Powerful, Alt Bomontiada, Istanbul (15 February–16 April 2017). Courtesy the artists and Alt Bomontiada.

Would you consider decolonisation as a driving force in your practice?

The process of decolonising was also about the ways we thought about the returns of the Neolithic masks in the form of the ski masks. But we also wanted to think about the masks in relation to the destroyed villages as well, because again, here, we come up against a very clear resonance and intersection. The destroyed sites are treated by the colonial process as fossilised sites that must remain in the dead time of history. In fact, some villages are being transformed into 'archeological' sites. The activation of the site as a living fabric is one of constant anxiety for the colonial narrative that is concerned with the occupation of time itself. And so, what we wanted to do, is think about these potential sites of decolonisation in relation to one another. So, in the work, the people making the trips use the masks to create new rituals. The masks that they wear are all 3D-printed in black plastic, so they subtly recall the black ski mask but also depart from it, opening new understandings of what sort of performative powers the mask as a tool can have now.

And Yet My Mask is Powerful utilises a narrative structure that takes the viewer on a journey and a search, whether driving through walled-off passages, walking through fields and among ruins or through a network of audiovisual material inside a computer desktop and browser. There is an overwhelming sense of urgency—as you have mentioned—in the search for information, research and material. Could you expand on this?

The urgency really comes from the conditions of living in a colonial situation, that ongoing lived experience necessitates a search for ways in which we can resist the manifold violences of that regime. But there are no answers as such, only the activation of new grounds from which to not be docile towards colonial time, narrative, and space. This is a very important position for us right now, in order to resist these regimes of erasure, we need to not always begin from within their logic or language. How can we activate a way of thinking and being that is not bound within colonial-capitalist power? That is the search—that is what we are searching for. And in that process, we point to the incomplete nature of the colonial project, and all that escapes its logic and domination whilst being subjected to it. Of course, we are also part of an incomplete project of emancipation.

Basel Abbas and Ruanne Abou-Rahme, And Yet My Mask is Powerful (Part 1) (2016). Exhibition view: And Yet My Mask is Powerful, Alt Bomontiada, Istanbul (15 February–16 April 2017). Courtesy the artists and Alt Bomontiada.

With regards to one of the stanzas you use from Adrienne Rich's poem Diving into the Wreck: 'the thing I came for: the wreck and not the story of the wreck / the thing itself and not the myth'. Why is it important to come for the wreck and not for the myth of the wreck?

When we read Diving into the Wreck, it immediately resonated with us. In the poem, she is engaging with the materiality of the wreck itself and with the very visceral, bodily experience of returning to the wreck. For us, materiality and embodiment are extremely significant in a moment filled with bodily and material erasures. In many ways, the project is about these intersections between materiality and mediation, embodiment and disembodiment, thingness and virtuality, as in Rich's poem. We wanted to think about the site of the destroyed village as a fabric and material that is not only witness to its own erasure but is also resisting this erasure.

Basel Abbas and Ruanne Abou-Rahme, And Yet My Mask is Powerful (Part 1) (2016). Exhibition view: And Yet My Mask is Powerful, Alt Bomontiada, Istanbul (15 February–16 April 2017). Courtesy the artists and Alt Bomontiada.

Because of the possibility of peoples' returns—here we are referencing Palestinians that were internally displaced within what became Israel and often live only 20 to 30 minutes away from their destroyed towns—more often than not the site is hidden in one way or another, often cordoned off by barbed wire and signs that forbid entry. These acts of enclosure attempt to freeze and fossilise the sites; to transform them into a dead space of archeological interest rather than living sites that can be re-inhabited, whose buildings, land and vegetation can be almost too easily rehabilitated back into the present tense. At many of these sites, people return to use the churches and mosques, though later they may find them closed off in the name of 'restoration'. What is implicit is that once the sites are 'restored' they will become archeological sites; the spaces can no longer be used—they enter the dead time of history rather than the living time of the present. And yet, these policies don't seem to be successful. People continue to return, creating openings in the wires wide enough for bodies to pass through into another possible present.

The video and installation possess a distinct focus on the local, natural environment and its presence, history, and texture. How did you experience being immersed in this overgrown environment? What discoveries came out of your returns to these sites?

In our returns to the sites we discovered something even more incredible, and that is each site has a living archive of vegetation that is resisting the colonial erasures. Something in the very tissue of the site itself is undeniably living, it permeates from the soil into the stone and back into every bit of vegetation. There is a swarm of non-human life forces here, from the insects, to the wild thorns, to the pomegranate trees that are inscribed with the living memory and story of the site. And it is here in the living archive of the vegetation itself that the site lives and breathes.

Basel Abbas and Ruanne Abou-Rahme, And Yet My Mask is Powerful (Part 1) (2016). Exhibition view: And Yet My Mask is Powerful, Carroll / Fletcher, London (9 September–29 October 2016). Courtesy the artists and Carroll / Fletcher.

Most times one cannot see the destroyed village unless you are really searching for it and even then, when you are searching for the site it is very difficult to find. It has been obscured by pines or eucalyptus trees planted in the wake of the destruction, planted usually to obscure the remains and even more to suffocate the existing vegetation. Just to explain, the pine, which was planted by the Israelis, mostly in the 1950s, is not native to the area. It was planted with such density that it radically transformed the land itself and visual contours of the landscape in many parts of the country. We are talking about a landscape that was rendered unrecognisable to the Palestinians who had managed to remain in the country. Many of the 400 or more villages that were destroyed and depopulated were literally obscured by this new pine forest. And at the same time, the pine needles that drop from these trees suffocated a lot of the existing plants and trees, and with the eucalyptus, it absorbs all the nutrients from the soil starving the other vegetation. And yet, somehow, given these conditions, a significant amount of the old vegetation still exists, and many times it is the very signs of the old vegetation that actually leads you to the remains of the villages. Often, it could be the sign of cactus or the smell of wild fennel, the trails of wild asparagus, or a lone pomegranate tree. Cactus was used to demarcate the borders of the villages and it is perhaps one of the most resilient life forces, the smallest bit of cacti can spawn whole new generations.

Basel Abbas and Ruanne Abou-Rahme, And Yet My Mask is Powerful (Part 1) (2016). Exhibition view: And Yet My Mask is Powerful, Carroll / Fletcher, London (9 September–29 October 2016). Courtesy the artists and Carroll / Fletcher.

How do you use visual and auditory elements as storytelling devices in the video?

Very often, we begin with a fragmented text that we have sampled from various writers, including ourselves. Both the video and sound are separately developed in relation to this text. Usually, we work on the sound before we work on the video. So, the sound has a very strong, conceptual relationship to the text. Once we are working with the video, whether from existing material or material film, then we start reworking the sound and vice versa. Initially, when we first started working together, we didn't feel that we could pick up the camera and film in Palestine. There were a lot of issues that needed to be problematised, namely the fact that images from Palestine had lost their potency. The repetition of the same images had almost taken the breath out of them, they were stagnating, and at the same time, the situation itself on the ground was going through a kind of stagnation.

We were stuck in the same discourses, but also literally stuck between checkpoints and walls. Our lines of vision had been quite literally obscured and occupied by the occupation. Our geographies would abruptly end when we reached a concrete wall and a sealed metal gate. That dystopic science fiction image of reaching the physical limits of a place, a world's end, was becoming manifest in Palestinian cities that would literally, physically end due to a militarised colonial structure. The military wall is not only a spatial tool of oppression, but a visual one. It severs the horizon of vision and in that the horizon of any futurity. So, in many ways, working with the idea of the loop—with cyclical patterns, whilst clearly influenced by the practices of video art—very much resonated with our lived bodily experience in Palestine. You quite literally loop back into space in Palestine. In our videos, we are searching for points of breaks, fractures, folds.

Basel Abbas and Ruanne Abou-Rahme, And Yet My Mask is Powerful (Part 1) (2016). Exhibition view: And Yet My Mask is Powerful, Carroll / Fletcher, London (9 September–29 October 2016). Courtesy the artists and Carroll / Fletcher.

In this same period, we started looking at how colonial technologies had changed the sound-scape, specifically how sound is instrumentalised to subjugate bodies and to create spatial structures, a kind of psycho-geography. Sound, far from being immaterial, is incredibly physical and tangible. We were interested in unpacking the relationship between sound, power, the body and psychology. One of our first sound pieces examined how sound was one of the central ways in which people were being disciplined and subjugated at one of the main Israeli military checkpoints between Ramallah and Jerusalem. The body is one of the critical points at which colonial power is exercised, and for us that bodily encounter could not be even fractionally grasped without the body of the audience itself becoming significant in our works. We are also interested in sonic practices that actively circumvent those practices of power. This is why certain music and aural practices are important for us. In that sense, our sound practice has been critical to our whole practice. The intersections between the body, space and affect became crucial to the ways in which we developed all our installations.

Our sound practice is also full of stutters and glitches in the same way that video is full of breaks and fractures. But in both, there is a sense of repetition and rhythm. So, despite there being a feeling of repetition, or looping back in on things, there is a rhythmic intensity that rises and ebbs. And although most audible in the sound, it is also in the way the images and text move in relation to the sound. It might sort of be significant here to mention that we create a lot of the sound through live applications. So, there are aspects of it that are improvisational and maintain a sort of 'liveness' to the work. Even with the video, many times, new formal developments come out of performing together on live sound and video applications. When you are performing, even in the studio the rhythm is far more informed by the rhythm and movement of your body. And it is in this building of rhythm that we formally express the incomplete project of regimes of power and subjugation, and the possibility of being unbound.

Basel Abbas and Ruanne Abou-Rahme, And Yet My Mask is Powerful (Part 1) (2016). Exhibition view: And Yet My Mask is Powerful, Carroll / Fletcher, London (9 September–29 October 2016). Courtesy the artists and Carroll / Fletcher.

My final question concerns the screenshots that feature heavily in And Yet My Mask is Powerful, both in the installation—pinned on boards, for example—or in the video, where they are laid one over the other. They are also in the book and function as objects in their own right as elements that shed light on your research process that also suggest a merging of the digital and physical realms. Could you talk about this?

Our practice is always positioned in the intersections and tensions between forms of physical and digital embodiment. And here we are thinking about embodiment in a very wide sense—embodiment of bodies but also things, ideas and so on. What we are thinking through is this interplay between physical materiality and space, the lived bodily experience and forms of digital embodiment and virtuality.

In our works, there is a constant movement of states of being between the physical, digital, and virtual. And as they move between these spaces, things mutate and accumulate. In And Yet My Mask is Powerful, screenshots are on screens but also tabs are deconstructed as separate layers and pinned up on a board, 3D designs of Neolithic masks appear on screens, in print as images and as realised objects. Extremely physical material traces from the destroyed villages are present in the form of plants, stones from the remains of houses, garbage left behind by people visiting the sites—but they are being projected back into our digital desktop where various tabs are open from video footage of the site to other research images and samples of text on the TextEdit app. And crucially these 'things' that unfold in the physical installation are activated in different ways by bodies in that space, as different readings or scripts are generated.

The question that comes about for us is, what is the relationship between the thing itself and its digital embodiments? And at the same time what is the relationship between forms of physical and digital erasures to forms of disembodiment? And this is when virtuality becomes important to us. Virtuality for us opens the space for a radically different projection of time that is not bound to the parameters of the immediately possible. It is about the relation between actuality and potentiality, what is and what could be.

Screenshot 2017-12-07 13.14.43. Courtesy the artists.

But to speak more directly about the use of the screenshot, process is really significant for us and our process involves searching and thinking through a range of materials and concepts. In that process of unfolding materials—looking through them both physically, digitally and virtually—unscripted connections or potentials emerge. The screenshot became a way to capture unscripted moments taken as we were working through various applications, images, and texts on our computers. They would appear as layers creating intersections, densities and disjunctures between research images, texts, algorithmic search results and so on.

Of course, for us, this method of working with layers, formally emerges out of a process of folding and unfolding temporal, historical layers and in doing this, drawing out the connections and ruptures between moments. But also, critically, always opening a space to project different potentialities. We are engaged in producing a non-linear reading of 'our' time that allows for a sense of multiplicity both conceptually and formally in the works. This approach shapes our merging of digital, physical and virtual realms in our work.

Perhaps just as equally significant in relation to this question is that—in this way of capturing material—there are always elements that cannot be fully seen or deciphered. So, it is very much a dense story of erasures and reappearances, dispossessions and resistances. This is particularly formalised in the way in which images build or dissipate on top of each other, both digitally and materially. —[O]

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