LONDON: THIS IS NOT A GATEWAY: Surveilling Surveillance
date: 2008-10-26

SURVEYING SURVEILLANCE: What and whom is surveillance for? Sunday 26th October, The Vortex, 3 Bradbury Street, Dalston, London N16 8JN 11.00 "SeeCTV – Watching the Watchers" – local street activism & documentation workshop 14.00 "Surveying Surveillance" Symposium 16.00 Workshop conclusion 1 This Sunday October 26th at 2pm, Alex Haw (atmos) will be chairing a major multidisciplinary discussion between various surveillance experts interrogating the purpose and spatial significance of surveillance technologies. 2 The Symposium will be preceded by a workshop at 11am exploring and documenting Dalston's neighbourhood surveillance 3 The overall Festival launch is this Thursday, 7pm; all welcome _______ 1 SYMPOSIUM Forms of surveillance are all around us, radically transforming our experiences of cities and spaces. Our attitudes to them are ambiguous and conflicted: we decry privacy intrusions but demand yet more CCTV cameras; our daily news is riddled with stories of disastrous data losses, yet dataveillance and surveillance are rapidly growing industries, increasingly explored by writers and artists, increasingly ubiquitous as forms of televisual entertainment. Our needs mingle with both our fears and our desires. This symposium, convened by Alex Haw (atmos) as part of the TINAG annual conference, gathers a number of experts from the various corners of the surveillance debate to confront and discuss issues concerning the purpose, ethics, effectiveness, spatiality, and finally the fantasies and dystopias of surveillance. Juvenal's oft quoted surveillance adage 'Quis Custodes Ipsos Custodiet' will prompt another Latin question: Cui Bono? Our main question is simply – what is surveillance for? Does it promote peace and justice, or encourage fear and anxiety? Does it benefit a private or privileged elite, or serve a much wider humanity? Is it there to be obeyed, or subverted? Which is its main constituency – the people, the politician, the policeman, the artist, the street performer, the service provider or CCTV operative? Each speaker will give a brief presentation of their work and research in the field before a wider panel discussion. Symposium starts at 2pm sharp, The Vortex, 3 Bradbury Street, Dalston N16 8JN Peter Fry Peter is a Chartered Civil Engineer, first introducing public area CCTV surveillance systems into the 5 towns of the Local Authority in the UK, of which he was Director of Operations. He has advised numerous Local Authorities and Police Forces on the management, operation and strategic development of their CCTV systems In 2000 he became director of the CCTV User Group, which develops standards for the operation of systems, and promulgates best practice; it's membership now approaches 500 organisation representing most of the Local Authorities and Police Forces throughout the UK, as well as universities, hospitals, retail, commercial and transport systems. Nic Groombridge Nic is a senior lecturer at St Mary's University College , Twickenham. He lectures in both media arts and sociology/criminology. His particular interests are the margins of criminology. He has published on CCTV, sexuality and criminology and car crime (the subject of his PhD) and contributed sections on sexuality, queer theory, normalisation and pathology to the Sage Dictionary of Criminology . He sits on the Editorial Advisory Board of the Howard Journal of Criminal Justice and the British Sociological Association's newsletter, Network . Alex Haw Alex Haw is an architect and artist operating at the intersection of design, research, art and the urban environment. He runs atmos, a collaborative experimental practice which produces a range of architecture and events including private houses, installations and larger public art commissions. Much of atmos' work focuses on the role of surveillance and dataveillance in shaping space, whether illuminating Canary Wharf with real-time solar data, immersing visitors into live spatial fluctuations of the Frankfurt stock exchange, building camera frameworks for dancing to CCTV, or transforming the tracked movement of everyone within a university into light. Alex has run design studios at the Architectural Association, Cambridge University and TU Vienna. Manu Luksch Throughout her films, telematic performances and interdisciplinary works, Manu Luksch is consistently preoccupied with the effect of emerging technologies on daily life, social relations and political structures. Luksch¹s recent project, science-fiction fairy tale Faceless, uses authentic CCTV footage, which she recovered under the UK¹s Data Protection Act following her ŒManifesto for CCTV filmmakers. Luksch has exhibited her work at venues and festivals internationally, including "Hors Piste" (Centre Pompidou, Paris 2008), "Goodbye Privacy" (Ars Electronica, Linz 2007), "Connecting Worlds" (NTT ICC, Tokyo 2006), "Satellite of Love" (Witte de With, Rotterdam 2006). She served as artistic director of the Munich Media Lab from 1995 to 1997, co-founded Art Servers Unlimited in 1998, and, in 1999, founded Ambient Information Systems. Paul Mackie Paul Mackie is a founder member and Compliance Director of Camerawatch, the not-for-profit organisation which supports organisations to ensure that their CCTV systems are operated in compliance with the Data Protection Act. As Managing Director of Compliance Solutions and Compliance Consultant with UK leading CCTV compliance company DATpro Ltd, he helps public and private business sectors to identify and rectify non-compliance of their CCTV systems. He has over 30 years experience working with both National Government and major international blue-chip organisations, specialising in compliance, management and legalisation of industry software within the IT industry. Mark Simpkins Mark Simpkins is an online activist and artist, who is the co-founder of geeKyoto ( ) and also the founder of 'This Is Our Algorithm'. He has worked on civic software projects such as which started the craze to make government documents open and annotatable. He also worked with some other volunteers to build both and for the 2005 UK General Elections. He runs a small consultancy, NodalResearch, on the use of online tools for social and civic software solutions and has been technical consultant for the Design Against Crime Research Centre based at Central St. Martins in London. He is also a Senior Technical Project Manager at the BBC and blogs intermittently at 2 WORKSHOP The "Surveying Surveillance" symposium will be accompanied by a workshop led by Alex Haw (atmos) & Manu Luksch (ambientTV) involving local collective CCTV activism and research, as attendees not only scour the local streets for the presence of local CCTV, but also attempt to physically confront, wherever possible, the invisible watchmen behind the lenses, to image their control rooms, and to document the ensuing conversation. The aim of the workshop will be to document the social and spatial defence of CCTV networks, to verify the relative legality of existing systems, and to compile information on the ways CCTV owners and operatives articulate and defend their behaviour. The documentation will seek evidence on the slippage between legality and operation, and the blurriness of CCTV practice. Participants are asked to bring as many video and sound-recording documentation devices as possible. Places are limited; please pre-register via email to Workshop starts at 11am sharp, The Vortex, 3 Bradbury Street, Dalston N16 8JN 3 LAUNCH PARTY Festival Launch, all welcome: 7pm Thursday 23rd October, Cafe Oto The launch is free and open to all - a chance to meet other participants & festival-goers, hear some music (open music archive and dubmode) and see some of the exhibitions in the festival. Space is limited; please register: This Is Not A Gateway Festival is a free three-day event in Dalston, London that is forging new ways of investigating cities. Emerging European practitioners from the fields of film, photography, literature, critical theory, performance, architecture and planning come together to reveal knowledge about cities 'from the ground up'. The three-day festival comprises over 40 separate events including discussions, film screenings, workshops, symposiums, exhibitions and walks. The programme includes work from 96 compelling emerging urbanists from across Europe. All events are open to the public. The overall festival programme can be downloaded as a pdf at The general Festival will be centred around Cafe Oto , 18 - 22 Ashwin street, Dalston, London E8 3DL, Thursday 23rd - Sunday 26th October 2008 : This Is Not A Gateway {TINAG} was founded to address four urgent concerns: the need for accessible arenas for emerging practioners across Europe, who work in and on cities; the need for the development of new forms of urban citizenship; the desire for interdisciplinary and cross-cultural exchange; and the need to gather together, in a self-organised, informal and fruitful context. TINAG creates platforms for academics, activists, human rights canvassers, artists, politicians, writers, musicians, architects and more, whose point of departure is the city. TINAG is interested in building platforms for those outside of established circuits including illegal immigrants, travelers and people living in cities of past or continuing conflict. There is no doubt the most compelling new ideas and knowledge on cities is here. Deepa Naik and Trenton Oldfield : This Is Not A Gateway Tel: + 44 (0)7791 950 604 ____________