A “Jersey Barrier” is a concrete barrier designed in the 1950s by Stevens Institute of Technology for the state of New Jersey. The current presentation consists of three installations base don Jersey Barrier: a memorial for a teenage girl killed in a 2014 accident in Tabriz involving a Jersey Barrier; a second installation based on photo documentations of barriers, and a moving installation.
In the interaction between two opposing poles, where one part is active and the other passive, power is not specifically exclusive to the side which seems to be superior. Power claims all that builds up its potency. Power is not the force to control; it is enabled by the possibility and potentiality of consistency. The etymology of the word “Power” refers it back to two different meanings: “Poere” or the “ability to act or do; strength” referring to “legal power or authority; authorization”, and “Potens”; the third-person form of the same verb —also the root of the word “potent”— signifying a state of “potentiality”. According to Agamben*, such meaning of potentiality can be an alternative for de-centralized ability of the mass.
Contrary to our expectations, such reading allows the source of power to express itself. This can be understood by pure potentiality. In such reading of potentiality, the side which is being moved by power, finds its utmost capacity by remaining potential. This cannot be realized unless a break is taken from dialectic, which is itself broken in its nature. This rupture and interruption is like a ‘train locomotive braking’. Such redemptive moment, does not happen in the end, but offers the possibility for freedom throughout the way. You can expect the potential to turn into potentiality, at any moment.
Ali Hassan Yektai
* Agamben, Giorgio. “Mezzi senza fine. Note sulla politica” (1996) — “Means Without End: Notes of
Politics” Trans. Vincenzo Binetti and Cesare Casarino. University of Minnesota Press. 2000. ‘Form-of-Life’. p. 10.
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