Krystian Woznicki


Undeclared Movements

bbooks · 2020 · 288 pages · English · with 122 full-page color and black-and-white images · €15 · ISBN: 978-3-942214-31-5

Highly complex, thoroughly networked societies are so susceptible in some ‘neuralgic spots’ that a single pinprick is enough to trigger a catastrophic chain reaction. This insecure situation is instrumentalized by neoliberal governmenality: Rather than creating sustainable public structures that would make it easier to avert preventable harm, privatization and technological rationalization are being advanced and prevention is being displaced by preemption—a strategy of turning precarious lifeworlds into capitalizable assets by making potential threats securable and thus available for politico-economic speculation.

In Undeclared Movements, Krystian Woznicki explores the high price for and the limits of preemption. Zooming in on preventable ‘disasters’ in the Schengen Area – as varied as the “refugee crisis” of 2015 and “civil war” during the G20 in 2017 – Woznicki shows that the limits of preemption are manifesting themselves as enormous dangers for society, but also as opportunities for new forms of politics to arise.

Written before the COVID-19 pandemic, this book anticipates some of the urgent questions to be asked in the face of unprecedented yet preventable devastations: What does it mean for democracy that the exploitation of insecurities is contributing to the rise of increasingly AI-driven security industries, and public safety is being replaced by ‘national security’? What does it mean for co-existence that all of us are affected by the threats of densely inter-connected (and ultimately contagious) societies—but some are less vulnerable than others?

Woznicki writes: “By studying struggles that do not yet have an official political lobby, or that have not yet been actualized on the street or at a square as a recognizable collective body, it becomes possible to grasp political forms before the actualization of their potentialities occurs—that is, when we are on the brink of developing a political consciousness for what it means to be in the given crisis together.”

Table of Contents

7 The Schengen philosophy
16 Managing unpredictable movements


Becoming Ungovernable
25 Preemptive sense-making
37 Urban crowd control
48 The indistinguishable many
65 Black bloc noise

89 “Like a Hollywood produtction”
91 Film stills

Becoming Common
205 Violence of deprivation
215 Who is disposable?
230 Whose exceptional politics?
247 Sensing undeclared movements


273 Author’s Note
275 Image Index
281 Sources




“Connecting the dots between the attacks of September 11, anti-G20 protests in Hamburg and the 2015 refugee crisis in Europe, Woznicki weaves a narrative that creates the basis for a new way to see the world through the lens of what macro power structures have intervened to appropriate the mechanisms of human movement-management. […] a provocative contemporary analysis that is part theory, part critique and part micro-gallery. ”—Mathana in spheres. Journal for Digital Cultures, October 12, 2022 (EN)

“At the center of Krystian Woznicki’s book are corridors as central components of infrastructures in de jure and de facto states of exception, where the governmental art of movement control and circulation management develops, but at the same time potential for new movement(s) emerge. […] Time and again, Woznicki takes a look at the productivity of […] attempts at movement enclosure and makes clear that even as-yet-unorganized movements in the making must be understood as political acts. In precisely these undeclared movements, he not only sees potential for resistance, but also situates an opportunity for other ontopolitics.”—Katrin Kämpf in Zeitschrift für Medienwissenschaft, April 11, 2021 (GER | EN)

“We need not be helpless victims of […] preemptive manipulations, deprived by them legally or even ontopolitcally of the fundamental capacity for action, according to Woznicki. In support of this optimism he cites the black bloc group tactics that originated in Italy and are able of expressing collective longing. In struggle this may entail direct violence, but in everyday life it means upholding values of solidarity and mutual care.”—Peter Kunitzky in Camera Austria International, 152/2020 (EN)



“In a time of pandemics, borders matter more than ever. Taking corridors as a privileged lens to analyze strategies of movement management in the Schengen Area after 9/11, Krystian Woznicki provides us with powerful tools to anticipate processes, conflicts, and struggles of emergent futures.”—Sandro Mezzadra, political theorist, University of Bologna, co-author of Border as Method (2013) and Politics of Operations (2019)

“Whose data are deemed ‘clean,’ and whose ‘dirty’? Woznicki’s bold portrayal of illegalized mobility challenges narratives of exclusion and data-fueled divides in search of ways to truly co-exist and co-interpret our shared reality.”—Inte Gloerich, technology researcher, Institute of Network Cultures, Amsterdam, co-editor of State Machines (2019)

Undeclared Movements traces insurgence in its global connections. Intertwining text and images, it confers a haptic sense of the frictions, struggles and political forms that underpin and contest our logistical present.”—Evelina Gambino, political geographer and fractional worker, University College London, author of Beyond Seamlessness (2019)

“In closely observing the invisibilized movements of our society, Woznicki’s precise and thorough analyses reach their full scope in dialogue with and through the book’s numerous photographs. Calling for our observation, interpretation and sensibility, the image sequence unfolds a great richness: the ‘undeclared movements’ pass through it and pass silently through it again.”—Jean-Luc Nancy, philosopher, Université Marc Bloch, Strasbourg, author of The Truth of Democracy (2010) and The Disavowed Community (2016)

“In this era of preventable crisis, Woznicki devotes his analytical skills to deconstructing the latest upgrade of disaster capitalism.”—Marta Peirano, technology expert and social critic, co-founder of El Diario, Madrid, author of El Enemigo Conoce el Sistema (2019)



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Born in 1972 in Kłodzko, Poland. Lives and works in Berlin as a critic, organizer, photographer, and co-publisher of Berliner Gazette (BG), which he has been running since 1999 together with journalists, researchers, artists, activists, and programmers as an experimental platform in online and offline formats, including seminars, exhibitions, and annual conferences. Situated at the intersection of digitalization and globalization, his work focuses on socio-political questions of the common(s).

Author and editor of more than ten publications, including monographs and readers. As author Woznicki joined the inter-disciplinary and international internet project Views (1995), which was created by the media artist Ulrike Gabriel to map networked discourses. In the same year he started contributing to print and online media, primarily in German and English, and, qua translation, in several other languages. His contributions have been published in over 40 media, including Blimp, Eurozine, frieze, Neue Gesellschaft | Frankfurter Hefte, Mediapart, NON, open!, open democracy, springerin, Studio Voice, Texte zur Kunst, transversal, WDR 5, WOZ. Woznicki was Tokyo-correspondent for Spex and Telepolis (1995-1998); columnist for Wired Japan (1996-97), Japan Times (1998), and Camera Austria (2002-03); leading articles writer for the feuilleton of Frankfurter Rundschau (2003-06).

Organizer and curator of culture and media projects.
Projects prior to his Berliner Gazette commitment include a festival at SO 36/Berlin (1991), a film program at Cinevideo 5/Karlsruhe (1992), and a performance program at the alternative museum X’Teresa/Mexico City (1997). Activities parallel to his Berliner Gazette commitment include the digital archive 911.jpg, which was hosted by the Media Arts Lab of the Künstlerhaus Bethanien (2001-06) and the festival As Darkness Falls (2014), which was hosted by the Federal Cultural Foundation.

Photographer for periodicals and books since the mid-1990s. First created an extensive body of photo sequences for his book After the Planes (2017).

Speaker at grassroots initatives, cultural institutions, and universities since 1995, e.g. at Centraltheater (Leipzig), Documenta X (Kassel), FRAC (Marseille), Frankfurter Kunstverein (Frankfurt), Fundația Ceata (Bucharest), Goethe Institut (Belgrade), Gorki Theater (Berlin), Hokkaido University (Sapporo), Kunst Werke (Berlin), Mediamatik (Amsterdam), Media Lab Prado (Madrid), Medienturm (Graz), Maison Européenne de la Photographie (Paris), nbk (Berlin), Otherspace (Offenbach), Schauspiel Stuttgart (Stuttgart), Schirn Kunsthalle (Frankfurt), Shedhalle (Zurich), Städelschule (Frankfurt), Studio Hrdinů (Prague), t0/Public Netbase (Vienna), transmediale (Berlin), Universität Leipzig (Leipzig), Universidad Complutense (Madrid), and Volksbühne at Rosa Luxemburg Platz (Berlin).

Most recent teaching assignments include a Digital Politics seminar at Bard College Berlin and Al-Quds University · Open Society University Network.




Edited Volumes

Invisible Hand(s) (2020) | with contributions by Dario Azzellini, Christine Braunersreuther, Niccolò Cuppini, Tom Holert, Angela Mitropoulos, Katja Schwaller.*

A Field Guide to the Snowden Files (2017) | with contributions by Zejlko Blace, Simon Denny, Trevor Paglen, Laura Poitras, etc.*

Komplizen (2014) | with contributions by Kenneth Goldsmith, Janina Loh, Felix Stalder, Gesa Ziemer, etc.*

Modell Autodidakt (2011) | with contributions by Konrad Becker, Florian Cramer, Helmut Draxler, Heike Hennig, Ruth Sonderegger, Susanne Stövhase, Mark Terkessidis, etc.*

Vernetzt (2009) | with contributions by Imran Ayata, Stefan Heidenreich, Helgard Haug, Jean-Luc Nancy, Anne Schreiber, Yoko Tawada, Joseph Vogl, etc.

McDeutsch (2007) | with contributions by Matias Faldbakken, Sabine Erlenwein, Rainer Ganahl, Geert Lovink, Yoshua Okon, Estela Schindel, Anja Wollenberg, Kofi Yakpo, etc.

Swiss (2004) | with contributions by Michael Hardt, Laura Horelli, Gabi Vogt, Immanuel Wallerstein, etc.**

Genoa (2004) | with contributions by Enrica Bartesaghi, Armin Linke, Nadja Rakowitz, Saskia Sassen, Jules Spinatch, Kyoichi Tsuzuki, etc.**

Peace (2003) | with contributions by Tom Holert, Jacqueline Stevens, Magdalena Taube, Siegfried Zielinski, etc. **

Sneakers (2002) | with contributions by Brian Jungen, Anne Philippi, Andrew Ross, etc.***

Co-edited with
* Magdalena Taube
** Nicolas Bourquin, Sven Ehmann
*** Sven Ehmann, Axel Fischer




Allied Grounds | House of Democracy and Human Rights | Oct. 5-7, 2023 | with Dario Azzellini, Lorenzo Feltrin, Francesca Gabbriellini, Paola Imperatore, Jennifer Kamau, Svjetlana Nedimović, Brett Neilson, Florin Poenaru, and Harsha Walia.*

After Extractivism | House of Democracy and Human Rights | Oct. 13-15, 2022 | with Max Haiven, Özgün Eylül İşcen, Julio Linares, Katarina Kušić, Stefan Tiron, Manuela Zechner, etc.*

Black Box East | Sept. 23-25, 2021 | with Gal Kirn, Johanna-Yasirra Kluhs, Tanja Krone, Polina Manolova, Lela Rekhviashvili, Wladimir Sgibnev, Mira Wallis, etc.*

Silent Works | Haus der Statistik, Berlin | Nov. 12-14, 2020 | with Sana Ahmad, Luise Meier, Phoebe Moore, Katja Schwaller, etc.*

More World | ZK/U – Center for Art and Urbanistics, Berlin | Oct. 10-12, 2019 | with Sujatha Byravan, Anja Kanngieser, Clara Mayer, Sudesh Mishra, Marta Peirano, etc.*

Ambient Revolts | ZK/U – Center for Art and Urbanistics, Berlin | Nov. 8-10, 2018 | with Evelina Gambino, Sandi Hilal, Dia Kayyali, Tanja Sihvonen, Dzina Zhuk, etc.*

Friendly Fire | ZK/U – Center for Art and Urbanistics, Berlin | Nov. 2-4, 2017 | with Atossa Araxia Abrahamian, James Bridle, Deborah Cowen, Felicity Scott, etc.*

Tacit Futures | Volksbühne am Rosa-Luxemburg Platz, Berlin | Oct. 27-29, 2016 | with Konrad Becker, Jennifer Kamau, Brian Massumi, Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak, etc.*

UN|COMMONS | Volksbühne at Rosa-Luxemburg Platz, Berlin | Oct. 22-24, 2015 | with Yochai Benkler, Michel Bauwens, Pelin Tan, Harsha Walia, etc.*

Slow Politics | Supermarkt, Berlin | Nov. 13-15, 2014 | with Geert Lovink, Felix Stalder, Marina Sitrin, Max Haiven, etc. *

Slow Politics | Porto, Sapporo | Sept. 27-29, 2014 | with Joi Ito, Mitsuhiro Takemura, Hiroyuki Ito, etc.*

Complicity | Supermarkt, Berlin | Nov. 7-9, 2013 | with Gesa Ziemer, Michiel de Jong, Valie Djordjevic, Leonhard Dobusch, Janina Sombetzki, etc. *

Digital Backyards | Kunstquartier Bethanien, Berlin | Oct. 18-20, 2012 | with Domenika Ahlrichs, Eleanor Saitta, Géraldine Delacroix, Marcel Mars, etc. *

Learning from Fukushima | General Public, Berlin | Oct. 29, 2011 | with Sean Bonner, Lila King, Tomomi Sasaki, etc. *

Mobile Textkulturen | ICI Berlin, Berlin | Oct. 22-24, 2010 | with andcompany&Co., Mercedes Bunz, Sascha Kösch, Verena Kuni, Robin Meyer-Lucht, Kathrin Passig, etc. *

Meergemeinschaft | Sophiensaele, Berlin | June 12-13, 2009 | with Inge Baxmann, Angelo Bolaffi, Roberto Esposito, Christopher Uhe, etc.

McDeutsch | Museum für Kommunikation, Berlin | Dec. 15, 2006 | with Rainer Ganahl, Herwig Kempf, Kofi Yakpo alias Linguist, Yasemin Yildiz, etc.

* Co-curated with Magdalena Taube and BG team



Silent Works | Haus der Statistik, Berlin | Nov. 7-28, 2020 | An exhibition project by the Berliner Gazette e.V., funded by the German Capital Fund with works by Tekla Aslanishvili, EEEFFF, Melanie Gilligan, Benjamin Heisenberg, Peng! etc.*

Signals | Diamondpaper Studio, Berlin | Sept. 12-26, 2017 | An exhibition project by the Berliner Gazette e.V., funded by the German Capital Fund with works by Zejlko Blace, Simon Denny, Laura Poitras, SAZAE Bot, University of the Phoenix, etc.*

As Darkness Falls | Volksbühne at Rosa-Luxemburg-Platz, Berlin | Jan. 25-26, 2014 | A festival of the Federal Cultural Foundation with contributions by andcompany&Co., Mercedes Bunz, Marcia Cavalcante, Anke Domscheit-Berg, Evgeny Morozov, Robert Pfaller, Bruce Sterling, Marina Weisband, etc.**

BQV – Büro für Qualifikation und Vermögen | Dr. Pong, Berlin | May 19 – June 9, 2012 | An exhibition project by the Berliner Gazette e.V., funded by the German Capital Fund with Alice Creisher, Diedrich Diederichsen, Gertrud Koch, Tomoko Nakasato, Tim Pritlove, Johannes Paul Raether, etc.*

in/compatible publics | House of World Cultures, Berlin | Feb. 1-4, 2012 | An event series at the transmediale with Gabriela Coleman, Jodi Dean, Norifumi Ogawa, Liza Tsaliki, etc.***

Lebenskünstler | Kunstraum Kreuzberg/Bethanien + schools in 3 Berlin districts | Feb. 16-28, 2011 | A project by the Berliner Gazette e.V., funded by the Berlin Projects Fund for Cultural Education with Ali Chaer, Dirk Dresselhaus, Antje Majewski, Michael Markovicz, Jörg Offer, etc.*

Temporary Embassies | Berlin | Mar. 20 – Apr. 20, 2003 | An event series by Berliner Gazette e.V. in the context of the initiative Territorium jetzt! – Neue Republik Schwarzenberg, realized at spaces on Berlin‘s independent scene: Filmklub 58, Platoon Cultural Development, Springfeder Fabrik, FIPP, German Theater Abroad, Foto-Shop, Kurvenstar, Kaffee Burger, Reproducts Fernsehmuseum, filesharing, Kunstverein ACUD, nbi, Augenblick – Raum für Gegenwartswartskunst.

Young Japanese Cinema | Filmmuseum Antwerp | Apr. 9-30, 1997 | A film program funded by Japan Foundation with works by Tada Akio, Shojin Fukui, Utako Koguchi, Kazama Shiori, Hiroyuki Oki, Obitani Yuuri, etc.

Virus | X-Teresa Museum, Mexico City | Sept. 5-12, 1996 | Installation and performance program in the context of the 5th International Performance Festival Mexico City with works by Norimizu Ameya (Technocrat), Tadasu Takamine, etc.****

The Desire of Making the Invisible Visible | P-House, Tokyo | Aug. 11-22, 1996 | An exhibition in cooperation with the Tokyo Big Sight festival with works by Nina Fischer, Maroan el Sani, Mitsuhiro Takemura, etc.

Co-curated with
* Magdalena Taube
** Sabrina Apitz, Chris Piallat, Magdalena Taube
*** Tatiana Bazzichelli
**** Eloy Tracisio

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Design: Colnate Group

Header Image: Krystian Woznicki, Park Fiction, Port of Hamburg, July 8, 2017. From: „Undeclared Movements“ (2020), p. 198-199.

Portrait of Krystian Woznicki: Norman Posselt, 2019.

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Last modified: June, 2023