Exploring the rapid rise in surveillance in modern society, the public welcomed increased security efforts supporting the “war on terror”, willing to accept almost anything to protect themselves from more attacks. Airports continually enhanced their security measures with little or no regard to human rights laws. The British Airport Authority brought in fingerprinting and other Biometric testing even though it risked criminal action from the data protection watchdog if it went ahead. A
British study of surveillance showed that CCTV cameras disproportionately focus
on people of colour, women, and those who look or act slightly “different.” One in
10 women were monitored entirely for voyeuristic reasons. There are over 5 million
CCTV cameras in the UK alone.
In Orwell’s 1984 he refers to unconscious mannerisms that could give you away in public as “A nervous tic, an unconscious look of anxiety, a habit of muttering to yourself – anything that carried with it the suggestion of abnormality, of having something to hide…was itself a punishable offence. There was even a word it in Newspeak… Facecrime.” Michel Foucault's analysis of the rise of surveillance in modern society describes photography’s role in promoting 'the normalizing gaze, a surveillance that makes it possible to qualify, to classify and to punish. It establishes over individuals a visibility through which one differentiates and judges them' (Foucault 1977). I’m particularly interested in how the viewer engages with these images and how they may even question their own judgements when doing so. These images were taken in Dublin Airport and were not staged.
Unframed 20"(w)x20"(h) Paper size (including 1" paper border).
Edition size: 10 (7 available)
Date of Image: 2010