Polymer George For Listening to Centauri Tel. 4
A collaboration with George Tigkas
made in occasion of "SUPERHOST"
Curated by Like A Little Disaster and PANE project.
4 August – 22 October, 2019
Foothold / Like A Little Disaster
Via Cavour 68
Polignano a mare
In a totally touristified ecosystem as the one in Polignano a Mare, " SUPERHOST " uses the strategy of camouflage as an ironic hypothesis of resistance.
" SUPERHOST " is a real/fake Airbnb that manifests itself through an identity dissolved in a permanent chameleon-like process.
It emerges as a complex system of presentation strategies (of myself, of the neighbor) and of representation (of the self, of the others) that operate according to forces at play. These forces redefine, reorganize and re-explain the forms of the visible; they invite us to rethink the idea of the sign and of the production of the sign, the representation and the distortion of representation.
The interpretation of the environment of " SUPERHOST " has nothing to do with the concepts of truth and fiction. In its inside it is not necessary that the signs are true or false, but effective. What is worth is the credibility of the simulacrum offered to the other, the interactive moves and the regimes of belief and suspicion that are triggered.
The staging reiterates the maintenance of doubt, of a "duo-habere", the failure to find a unique solution in the observation, keeping both extremes of the true/false cognitive couple alive.
The gaze, the interactive filter between truth and fiction is related to the theories of "sight seeing", according to which the tourist experience (or the experience of the contemporary consumer tout court) would be profoundly altered due to the fact that it was pre-selected and pre-packaged, characterized by a series of social myths dependent on historical constructions aimed at a specific class, the wealthy one. Massified tourism industry is born from the alienation produced by capitalism in which even leisure and entertainment are shaped by the compulsive character of a society folded onto its smartphone, and organized travel becomes the emblem of the totalitarian nature of this system. The tourism industry is totally within the cultural one. What is purchased is a symbolic capital, but paradoxically the liberation from the world of industry takes place through the creation of another industry.
When tourism becomes a mass phenomenon, the element that normally necessary to the journey is the "sight", the thing that must be seen, classified with one, two or three stars, according to its value. The tourist knows the object as sight, that is to say as a normalized element, worthy of being taken as an objective of an experience. The dominance of the sight, the translation into images of things and their normalization react on the things themselves, reducing them to the condition of a museum, a botanical garden, a zoo or an amusement park. Like in a shop window, the things to be seen endure a capital transformation: they are detached from their context, deprived of their networks, of the relationship with the conditions that have determined them and which can, itself, explain them.
SUPERHOST explores inauthenticity: in the sense that the traveling tourist would not see the world as it really is, but only the world that has been selected for him-her / or carefully prepared by the local communities themselves; he would not therefore see things, theirnatural or cultural essence, but only their image. The spatial articulation shaped by anxiety for the likely and the iconic, ultimately takes on signs of signs with which we are accustomed to representing the world, the elsewhere, the otherness.
Seduction takes the place of persuasion.
The sign is made to lie!
Data and text contributions by: Murray Cox (Inside Airbnb), Cecilia Guida, Darren Marshall, Like A Little Disaster.
Polymer George For Listening to Centauri Tel. 4 2018-2019
Set design including dye sublimation printed fabric, cushions
double bed, terrazzo nightstands, headphones
George Tigkas sound installation
Centauri tel. 4 2018
Duration: 6.04 min
"Polymer George, For Listening to Centauri Tel. 4" is an installation by Hypercomf that functions as a soft vessel for concentrated listening to “Centauri Tel 4” a work by George Tigkas, consisting of a recorded telephone call. Hypercomf created bed linen and night stands for a discomforting bed , ones that are so comfortable they keep you up, tossing and turning all night. The linen is imprinted with scanned images of micro plastic and trash retrieved from the Northern shores of Tinos Island of the Cyclades. These shores are the final resting place for trash from commercial boat traffic from the North Aegean Sea. From the comfort of this bed, that you can pretend is your own for the night, relax and listen to the sound waves of a telephone call, licking the cement shoreline that receives the earths oceans.
On the 18th of September 2008, whilst the MV (motor vessel) CENTAURI was bound to Mombassa to discharge cargo, she was attacked by pirates. The pirates took full command of the vessel and diverted her to an anchorage off Somalia. For more than two months, the vessel, cargo and crew remained under armed detention and were finally released on 27th November 2008 against a ransom payment of US$ 924,000. Negotiations took 64 days during which 66 telephone calls were recorded. This recording is the first actual contact between the Somalis' spokesman and the company's proxy when the first request for ransom was established.
Hypercomf and George Tigkas
Centauri tel. 4 2018
sound installation, 6.04 min
TEL 4 TRANSCRIPTION
Date : Tuesday, 23 September 2008 – CD6
Time : 0940 (UTC+2) Duration: 5 mins 55 secs
From : To :
Capt Tigkas, Vouliagmeni, Athens, Greece – ‘YANNI’ Kidnappers’ Communicator, Somalia – ‘ABDI or AB-
............ Indicates that the words were unreadable. ( ) Indicates a comment by JME.
Y Hello, who is on the phone please ?
A Ah yes, I am Abdi. Are you Yanni ?
Y Yes, Yanni here.
A Yes, you know my number, so every time when you call me you will say ‘How are you, Abdi ?’
Y Yes, it’s only your own number because I don’t know if it’s for other people also.
A Abdullah, Abdullah, you can say Abdullah.?
Y Ah, Abdullah, it is the same. It is also for Abdullah.
A Yes, yes, that’s good you can say that ‘Abdullah’.
Y Ah, OK, I call you.
A OK, how are you ?
Y Sorry ?
A I am calling from militia and they, but they told you and you yourself. So I am going to tell you that they
want to get money they told me yesterday when I was on the ship.
A That’s why you have to go back company they want you to get 2 point 5 million (This figure was not heard
by Capt T).
Y How much ?
A 3 million, 3 million 5 hundred.
Y So, can you repeat that again ?
A 3 point 5.
Y Sorry ?
Y Abdullah, repeat please again.
A 3 million, 3 million.
Y 3 million what ?
Y 3 million what ?
A OK ............
Y You say 3 million, 3 million what ?
A Million dollars.
Y Dollars ! Oh my God ! For that old ship ? For such an old ship, 3 million dollars ?
A That’s their aim, that’s their aim.
Y Oh, that’s their aim ?
A Because of because they catch me because they say we need that number otherwise that we can do some-
thing so discuss amongst your company that money. Y Sorry they need that money and the what ?
A Only money if they get that money they will release the ship, otherwise they will beat men on the ship.
(Yanni was talking at the same time as Abdullah and did not hear the threat).
Y So you say 3 million dollars, eh?
Y OK. I will talk to the company and I will come back to you tomorrow, tomorrow, at the same time. Is it OK
for you ?
A This time, this time you can call me back.
Y This time, same time tomorrow, tomorrow morning, OK ?
A OK, OK, thank you, thank you.
Y So, are you sure it is 3 million dollars, eh ?
A Yes, yes, 3 million dollars. You will contact and you know my number.
Y OK, Abdullah. Is everyone on board OK ?
A Yes, yes.
Y You have good people on board, eh ?
A OK, that’s I’m me. I am carrying message, I am carrying message from militia, I am transmitting ...
Y So, so I pass message from the company to you and eh .
A 10 million. (Not heard by Yanni).
Y And can you tell me, have you done anything about the water you promise yesterday ?
A Ah, there is a lack of water.
Y So you promise. What are you going to do ?
A Now as far as possible we can fix you and me and maybe I will try ...... company. I don’t know what I can do
now ? Pump out the ship finish such very very difficult.
Y Sorry, I cannot follow you. Can you repeat that ?
A There is lack of water the problem of the ship.
A What can we do now ?
Y You promise yesterday you do something ?
A Yes but I be ......... for 100 ton water for the ship ....... from the
ship .......... But, eh, Captain said to me I can get it for money (not eard by Yanni).
Y OK, so I call you same time tomorrow.
A OK, thank you. Try to finish everything soon because of the problem of the ship. It will be good if you try
to finish soon.
Y Yes but you see Abdullah, it is lot of money. How can get this company – after all, as I told you, this is a
very old ship, a very old ship.
A Leave them to me, leave them to me.
Y I leave to you.
A Leader of militia, leader of militia now speaking with me. He ordered me I must transmit, he told me that
tell him that number.
A He wish you can try go to company and tomorrow I am waiting for you.
Y OK, I call you tomorrow.
A OK, thank you.
Y Thank you very much and I call you tomorrow bye, bye.
Quality of communications:
Once again, the line quality was reasonably good but, at times, Abdullah, as he now wishes to be called, was
barely intelligible. The full content of the call was only possible to determine after detailed analysis using
Polymer George’s Terazzo nightstand x2
beach plastic, drift wood, sea shells, pebbles, resin, rock and sand compounds
Dimensions: 36.5 x 27 x 4 cm each