Curator Mark Wasiuta (Columbia University) talks in this video about the installation Control Syntax Rio. An advanced command and control centre was opened in Rio de Janeiro long before the Olympic Games. The Centro de Operações Rio (COR) monitors urban traffic movements, people flows, weather conditions, calamities and health risks at all hours of the day.
The installation Control Syntax Rio shows how the COR approaches the Olympic city as a matrix of possible disasters and solutions. The COR is concerned with vast streams of data and algorithmic analysis, but the effects of its command and control mechanism – described by the curators Mark Wasiuta and Farzin Lotfi-Jam as a "control syntax" – are much more concrete. They directly affect the social climate of the city: neighbourhoods can be sealed off, traffic can be redirected and citizens can be temporarily denied access to public facilities.
Film on the occasion of the exhibition 'Control Syntax Rio - Monitoring the Collective Body' on view in Het Nieuwe Instituut from 12 June 2016 until 8 January 2017.Download teaching materials