Retrograde Futurism

Hameed, Ayesha. 2018. Retrograde Futurism. In: Marina Otero Verzier and Nick Axel, eds. Work Body Leisure. Rotterdam: Het Nieuwe Instituut/Hatje Cantz Verlag GmbH, pp. 289-297. ISBN 9783775744256 [Book Section]

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Abstract or Description

A contribution to the catalogue produced for the Dutch Pavillion at the 2018 Venice Architectural Biennale.

Description: On April 29, 2006, a twenty-foot boat was spotted off the south-eastern coast of Barbados. On board, eleven bodies were found by the coastguards, preserved and desiccated by the sun and salt water. The ghost ship was adrift for four months on the Atlantic Ocean. It set sail on Christmas day in Praia in the Cape Verde Islands, full of migrants from Senegal, Guinea Bissau, and Gambia, en route to the Canary Islands. Each of these men paid £890 for their place on the boat. Four months later the boat was found on the coast of Barbados.

This is an inadequate telling of this story that draws on the materials and tools at hand to make sense of the complicity of weather, ocean currents and state violence in the journey of this ship. Hovering between the film and the essay form is a questioning of the adequacy of the measuring of histories and affects connected to crossing, languages to make evident the materiality of the sea, and the both measurable and immeasurable horror contained in the figure of the ghost ship.

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Visual Cultures



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Date Deposited:

20 Feb 2019 09:42

Last Modified:

20 Feb 2019 09:42


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