Territorial Volumes

Luke Withers

2017 - Ongoing


Gibraltar is a 426m limestone rock which rises from the Mediterranean at the gates of the Atlantic. Due to it’s lack of natural resources, the disputed territory relies on desalination for its drinking water; a process wherein saltwater, drawn from contested seas, is separated through a membrane into freshwater and brine. This water is stored in elevated, subterranean reservoirs cut into the rock. The elemental bodies that constitute the territory; rock and water, become entwined in the geopolitics of the place through their disruption, distribution and depiction.

In foregrounding the elemental, the visuals of sovereignty are reduced to the constituent components of territory, rock and water. The subterranean infrastructure both demarcates the territory and supports the life of the population, which is itself in flux; experiencing the bodily reality of borders on a physical and molecular level, through movement, habitation and hydration.

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