Matthew Galloway

The Freedom of the Migrant

21 April 2018 - 12 August 2018

The Freedom of the Migrant takes its starting point from a column published in the New Zealand Herald on 26 March 2016, written by NZME Head of Business Fran O’Sullivan. In this, O’Sullivan retells a scenario of a hypothetical terrorist attack that was presented by Sir John Key to members of the business community in Auckland, shortly after his return from a meeting of the International Democratic Union (of which Key was then Chairperson).  The article opens up questions of how New Zealand politicians might position this country to benefit from the perception of its distance from current global and political instability.

Matthew Galloway uses the tools and methodologies of design to discuss the central themes introduced in Key’s hypothesis – addressing the impact and legacy of dominant political narratives constructed around terrorism and the refugee crisis, and examining how this in turn influences collective perceptions of border control, freedom of movement, and national identity. Through his research-led art practice, Galloway explores aspects of the visual language of politics, peace and conflict. A printed newspaper features a series of interviews with experts across the fields of immigration policy, terrorism and political commentary, providing an accompanying dialogue that follows the trajectory of Galloway’s research process. Through these two strands of investigation, The Freedom of the Migrant speaks to the complexity of this current period of uncertainty and change in a national and global environment.

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