The Black Chamber. Surveillance, paranoia, invisibility & the internet

The Black Chamber. Surveillance, paranoia, invisibility & the internet

The Link Art Center is proud to announce the publication of The Black Chamber. Surveillance, paranoia, invisibility & the internet, the catalogue of the exhibition with the same title curated by Eva and Franco Mattes with Bani Brusadin, premiered at Skuc Gallery, Ljubljana and currently on show at Mali Salon, Rijeka. The book is co-published with Aksioma, Ljubljana

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How did the internet go from the utopian free-for-all, open source heaven, libertarian last frontier to the current state of permanent surveillance, exhibitionism and paranoia? This duplicity is the underlying thread that links the artists, activists, and researchers in The Black Chamber, an exhibition, a symposium, an urban intervention and a publication.

Developed through ongoing research on these subjects by internationally renown artist duo Eva & Franco Mattes and researcher and curator Bani Brusadin, The Black Chamber aims at discussing the delicate and often awkward role of art and imagination in the age of mass surveillance, stressing the multiple connections between post-studio art and independent research, grassroots reverse engineering, and new forms of political activism in the age of networks.

This publication is not just an exhibition catalogue. It’s also an attempt to show the exhibited works as part of larger research processes. Including original material, texts and documents kindly provided by the artists and their publishers, documentation of the live events and excerpts from the conference, this book documents ingenious artist and activist strategies, discussing at the same time the cultural and social context of the ideas that generated the show.

Featuring works and original contributions by Jacob Appelbaum & Ai Weiwei, Laura Poitras, Metahaven, Zach Blas, James Bridle, Émilie Brout & Maxime Marion, Simon Denny, Jill Magid, !Mediengruppe Bitnik and Evan Roth.


The Black Chamber is realized in the framework of Masters & Servers. Networked Cultures in the Post Digital Age, a joint project by Aksioma (SI), Drugo more (HR), Abandon Normal Devices (UK), Link Art Center (IT) and d-i-n-a / The Influencers (ES) that was awarded with a Creative Europe 2014 – 2020grant. For 24 months from September 2014, Masters & Servers will explore networked culture in the post-digital age.



This project has been funded with support from the European Commission. This communication reflects the views only of the author, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.




Bani Brusadin, Eva & Franco Mattes, Domenico Quaranta (eds), The Black Chamber. Surveillance, paranoia, invisibility & the internet. Exhibition catalogue, Link Editions + Aksioma, April 2016. Color, 152 pp, ISBN 978-1-326-61205-4


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