Showreel 2017-2023


Border Emergency Collective (BEC) is a group co-founded by researchers and activists Martyna Marciniak, Filip Wesołowski, Katarzyna Czarnota and Sarian Jarosz in response to the ongoing humanitarian crisis on the Polish-Belarussian border. With the help of Open Source Intelligence (OSINT) techniques and 3D reconstruction the collective documents the increasing scale of violence toward migrating people perpetrated by Polish and Belarusian law-enforcement.  

BEC uses the practice of situated testimony to help reconstruct and recall the memories associated with being stuck between on the border during the time of border militarisation which started in August 2021. In particular it focuses on push backs of migrants from Poland to Belarus and forced pushes of migrants into Poland organised by Belarusian forces. The work uses detailed reconstruction of selected moments in the journey to illustrate the otherwise undocumented events. 

The Zone of Hidden Violence is a recording of stories of two refugees - Mariam and Hamdi (names were changed for security reasons), who were stuck at the Polish-Belarusian border for over 40 days, in the late autumn and winter of 2022. Their phones were destroyed or confiscated, and with them - the recordings of their journey. Like it happened to countless other people: the evidence of their experience and abuse was gone. 

For The Zone of Hidden Violence, four moments of Mariam and Hamdi’s journey were selected and reconstructed in the process of the spatial interview. The digital artefacts and recordings became evidence of the violence they faced and a greater testimony of systemic treatment of other people stuck at the border. The stories of the witnesses - Mariam and Hamdi contextualise many other stories that were recorded through data analysis and catalogued by Polish NGOs. In the process of situated testimony reconstruction it was found that especially small details triggered more recollection in the witnesses, unlocked large parts of their narratives and exposed the complex orchestrations of surveillance and systemic violence. The project - summarised in the form of a video report was presented at the Warsaw Biennale in 2022.

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