Liquid Traces - The Left-to-Die Boat Case on Vimeo
Pour ne pas oublier, les protagonistes surtout, et le remarquable travail d’enquête des auteurs au sein du groupe « Forensic Architecture » du Goldsmiths Institute à Londres
Directed by Charles Heller and Lorenzo Pezzani, 17 min, 2014
Liquid Traces offers a synthetic reconstruction of the events concerning what is known as the “left-to-die boat” case, in which 72 passengers who left the Libyan coast heading in the direction of the island of Lampedusa on board a small rubber boat were left to drift for 14 days in NATO’s maritime surveillance area, despite several distress signals relaying their location, as well as repeated interactions, including at least one military helicopter visit and an encounter with a military ship. As a result, only 9 people survived.
In producing this reconstruction, our research has used against the grain the “sensorium of the sea” – the multiple remote sensing devises used to record and read the sea’s depth and surface. Contrary to the vision of the sea as a non-signifying space in which any event immediately dissolves into moving currents, with our investigation we demonstrated that traces are indeed left in water, and that by reading them carefully the sea itself can be turned into a witness for interrogation.