Which Things Were (Are) Allowed And Which Were (Are) Not

Artist statement

Which things were (are) allowed and which were (are) not is based on the concept of ‘self-spying’. The project records my daily activities throughout March 2014, when I was undertaking an artist residency at Lichtenberg Studios in Berlin. The project includes a series of photographs and documents.

I developed the idea of self-spying following a visit to the Stasi Museum at Lichtenberg, which is located on the former grounds of the headquarters of the German Democratic Republic Ministry for State Security (MfS). The museum presents evidence of political persecution and methods that were used by the MfS to spy on their own citizens. This evidence shows how the German Democratic Republic controlled all aspects of life and decided which things were allowed and which things were not.

In this work, I question notions of what is allowed and what is not allowed; how people are shaped by ideology and perhaps even how we restrict ourselves.

Wai Kit Lam
Lichtenberg, Berlin, Germany