Working from the theme ‘arbitrary’, (no. 35553_12) is a reflection on mechanisms of power in western democracies. The image and concept of the Star Chamber (a 15-17th century English court of law, today used as a metaphor for the arbitrary (ab-)use of power) underlies the audio-visual installation. While the original star chamber referred to authoritarian decisions made behind closed doors, today large parts of decision making processes have been made transparent and publicly accessible, particularly online. Do these flows of bureaucratic information however, make decision making any more accessible?
The installation presents a total of 3.5 hours of audio and 1.5 hours of video footage from the single European Court of Human Rights’ case of S.,V.and A. v Denmark (case no. 35553_12). Through disorientation, the installation probes the paradoxical difference between access and accessibility. The visitor is confronted with the limits of the accessibility of information and agency in ‘transparent’ decision making processes.