Shadows of the State
(2015 – 2018)
Numbers stations are mysterious broadcasts of coded messages intended for undercover intelligence agents in enemy states. Shadows of the State adapts open source research and satellite image interpretation in order to investigate these broadcasts and to locate the transmitters for thirty of these stations, from Russia to Libera, Cyprus to South Korea. The book presents detailed information about each station, including satellite maps, radio spectrograms, and scanable barcodes which reveal recordings of their transmissions.
Shadows of the State is partly about the possibility of turning the methodologies and technologies of espionage back against their users, and in doing so bringing some light and accountability to a world which exists in stark contrast to these things. But it is also about the difficulties of exploring a topic where certainty is almost impossible to come by, and where paranoia, conspiracy and misinformation collide constantly with objective fact.
Project comprises: 72 high resolution colour satellite photographs, 40 colour spectrograms of radio transmission, approximately 300 A4 pages of research materials, 21 minute video installation.
Book published by Brave Books, 2018.