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Cerberus. The Three Headed Monster.

A Behemoth Press project at the 15th Venice Biennale 2016
Kuwait Pavilion Between East and West: a Gulf
with Matteo Mannini Architects

2016

We often use the words of pirate and privateer interchangeably, while in fact each has a particular meaning. Legally, there is a difference between a pirate and a privateer: unlike the pirate, the privateer holds a legal title, the commission from a government, a “letter of marque”. (S)he is entitled to fly a country’s flag. On the opposite, pirates navigate without a legal authorisation. Their only flag is the black-flag. Nevertheless, this distinction so clear and elegant in theory was blurred in practice. Privateers often exceeded the limits of their licenses and navigated using forged letters of marque and, at other times, were armed only with licenses from non-existing governments. Somehow we could claim that privateers were not so dissimilar from contemporary freelancers. A freelancer is in fact a one-man company: an entrepreneur of herself. The life of a freelancer coincides with her own work: pure labor power at the service of a client. As for freelancers, the life of privateers was based on a contract with a sovereign, proceeding at their own private risk. Their actions were not illegal, but precarious. [Cerberus; a Behemoth Press project in progress]

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