Switzerland is regarded as one of the safest countries on earth, a prime example of efficiency and efficacy. But how do state and private actors ensure this valuable commodity, as much a basic need as a billion-dollar business? And how much freedom are we, as citizens, willing to give up for our security? How to Secure a Country (2014-19) is a visual research project that seeks to discover the central tenets for such a country to evolve, exist and endure. Salvatore Vitale investigates the social and technological mechanisms underlying this national security complex, and the various institutional protagonists involved: police, military, customs and migration authorities, weather services, IT companies and research institutions for robotics and artificial intelligence. Exploring the ways in which social, political and psychological phenomena become stabilised through seemingly-standard operating procedures, the project positions itself as a critical artistic contribution to discussions within a society that is confronted with emergent threats – real or perceived.
In collaboration with Fotostiftung Schweiz, Winterthur.