Artist, writer, and “experimental geographer” Trevor Paglen, and The Speculative Archive (Julia Meltzer and David Thorne) join forces in a program investigating the secret underworld of government and the war on terror.
In recent years, the CIA has been using unmarked civilian airplanes to kidnap and transport suspected terrorists to countries like Syria, Egypt, and Romania where they can be tortured outside of the official US military and prison system. In this lecture-based piece, N4467S: Tracking the CIA’s “Torture Planes” uses diagrams, photographs, and other documents, to navigate the fog of misinformation surrounding a Boeing 737: visiting the street addresses of front companies, observing airfields, and comparing many fake signatures attributed to its owner.
The Speculative Archive’s new video began with research around the US National Security Strategy of 2002 and its focus on preemption as a means to spread global democracy. Not a Matter of if but When asks the question: How do visions of the future re-shape the time and experience of the present? The team examines how people live between political possibilities (their autocratic regime, American ultimatums) or “Iraqi-style civil war or the devil we know.” Are these the only possible visions of a future?