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Entrapment

2020

The work was commissioned in the context of the Primarolia Festival, which takes place every year in Aigio, Greece. Entrapment is prompted by the fact that the Primarolia ships (which give their name to the festival) did not carry merely the famous black currant, but also many other "passengers" that constituted a parallel cargo: insects, small animals and – mainly – rodents, which have been the most common "stowaways" of vessels for thousands of years. At a time when mobility should have seemed easier than ever thanks to the continuous improvement of technical means, new borders and obstacles are being erected. This is evident in a number of cases: from the management of refugee and migration crises to the bans imposed by all kinds of counter-terrorism measures; and from the restriction of our movements due to the fear of pandemics to the displacement of populations caused by climate change. In this environment, mobility exists only through the prism of a continuous insecurity, to which we have gradually become habituated. A fragile, violently "playful" condition of constant provisionality, which can easily lead to total immobility and (self-) entrapment. The work’s inception was particularly informed by two such occasions: the Trump administration's family separation policy, and the refugee crisis in Europe. Notably, despite the change of the American administration, more than 17,000 children remained kept in the cages of US detention centres in 2021. And this harsh beginning to life also remains a common occurrence across the Mediterranean for thousands of detained and often unaccompanied children, for whom violence has become a routine akin to a game.

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