Jakob Wirth

Beobachtung 2. Ordnung

Beobachtung 2. Ordnung

“Observation of the second order”. WIK Kollektiv in collaboration with Alexander Böckel. Public Performance. GER. Berlin. 2019.

#power_relation #surveillance #public_space  #repression_of_the_police #panopticon

CONTEX: For four years a permanent police station has been installed at Alexanderplatz in Berlin to monitor the square and to prevail criminal activities. However, in reality, the police station is dominating the place and banishes everything and everyone who is differing from the social norm. As a consequence of this police observation, a lot of social diversity has disappeared from the square.

Who observes and who is observed? Who is subject and who is object in the production of space? Which dominions are we exposed to in public space and who is displaced by it?

During the Performance we observed the executive subject (police) during a second-order observation intervention. In the course of the intervention the normal subject-object order (observer and observed) between police and citizen changed.

When the police realized that they were being observed and had lost their subject position in the Panopticon, unrest and insecurity arose in the police station. This uncertain situation was resolved after an hour of action. In the end they led us into the station, showed their dominance and thereby returned to their usual hierarchical subject position. After this altercation, the space of representation was set up again, and the “second-order observation“ was terminated causing the exclusive space on Alexanderplatz to continue as before.

Photos: © Kamila Juruc