Tag Archives: espionage

Passports to Nowhere (for someone else)

lousy photo of interesting stack of passports etc (waiting to be) in process

I’ve started modifying old passports with ink, stamps, ink stamps, fake maps & assumed espionage… this means late night eBay buying Albanian passports. Just so many weird good items to remix i cant/wont/dont stop.

The paper is so tactile / interesting & with all the visa stamps, (stapled) photos (sometimes Mom & kids in one photo), stamps, visas, details of all kinds + occasional ephemeral papers slipped in.& almost-intimate details make such a starting point for stories. {note: takes a bit of daring to desecrate at first, however lovingly}.

I ones i purchase are $10 or so. Yugoslavs are cheap. CCCP/USSR and DDR can get more expensive. Lots of Romania, Bulgaria and old Kingdom of Greece stuff. Odd (in a way) how this sort of ephemera is abundant from some countries, scarce from others.

The US ones (above) are great, via Israel… perhaps/seems Israeli citizen(s) had applied for US citizenship, gone to US and other countries and eventually returned. these ones have a loads of country stamps so interesting to speculate on story. Again, feels rather intimate and mysterious.

Several i’ve picked up seem to be “the last one before emigrating”. Now i’ll continue the story with my odds and ends and alterations and possibly put up for sale/trade to continue their journey.  {i should probably do that etsy shop…}

Passport issued by The Matinée rock and roots band for Dancing on your Grave

Oh and while i’m passporting, had an extra “headband” photo so finally decorated up my The Matinee “Dancing on Your Grave” passport. Will be scribbling in poetry and usual inky stamps on the pages within.

Note to self: finish tuning up Cascadia passport from & share here

PS since i’m typing… more random passport-inspired items in archive (i have almost all of my mine from various countries) plus other related: 

#daveo50 “Personal Archeology Project” (Lomo camera)

Personal Archeology Exhibit – #daveo50
Pre-scheduled Daily Ephemera / 2020 6.26 ~ 8.16

In creating the 200+ posts for this personal archeology project, I’ve used all sorts of different tools (analog and digital) to capture the artifacts and ephemera sourced from creations made from other analog and digital tools… Like a recursive mirror looking at yourself – ha! #meta  In doing so, to add an extra layer of meta, i’ve documented (some of) the tools used to create original projects.

In this case, a  Lomo “La Sardina” sardine can camera – modelled after cameras used for espionage and intrigue by erstwhile spies for clandestine operations – this one, a special cork covered limited edition and uses 35 mm film.

For more fun, i use whatever old crusty expired film i can get my hands on (tip: look at the bottom shelf of dusty old drug stores), and has a battery powered flash with some snap-on filters for weird effects.

Sometimes the film loads rather *incorrectly* so the images get split across two frames, further, a night in a psychedelic Volkswagen bus sauna seems to have melted a lens somewhere to make things even fuzzier – there are a few other tricky features built-in, (by tricky, they’re very simple but create tricks like long or double exposures).

When traveling, tend to stay away from snapping at a lot of pictures and instead feel like a third grade Ansel Adams in that I carefully consider each frame, that said, the results are very different then a master photographer using a large format camera, so really, the point doesn’t stand whatsoever… but what I mean is: I make scrapbooks, paintings, sketches, poems, occasionally some ambient audio recordings and a few digital reference photos when needed but enjoy the fuzzy hazy unpredictable snaps from the 35mm camera… I especially enjoy when the exposed roll of film is lost/ stashed/ possibly forgotten for a period of time and then I need to track down somewhere to develop meaning the results are known months or years after the shutter snap.

The results from this Lomo camera are scattered throughout this archive, specifically from Kerala, India (on Remembrance Day), a train ride through the length of Thailand (co-mingled with poems), collections from Grateful Dead concerts and driving across the US Midwest (time-lapse-ish), oh yeah, Big Cottonwood Canyon and the aforementioned VW bus to Diamond Fork hot springs to Las Vegas.

Dig in for your own amusement, that’s the point. Snap click wind wait.

fondly, dvo/uw

Numbers Station Sending Alert for Action

From Prague to Irkutsk to Montevideo, shortwave radios broadcast voices, numbers and patterns. Origins (generally) unknown beyond speculators and bureaucratic engineers from ousted fiefdoms gone stale.

They found no benefit or public belief for revealing secrets, so no one did… Speculations generally drift towards messages to embedded agents of nefarious organizations.

Simply put, clandestine instructions need sending.

However the keys to transmitters were lost, floppy disks written in COBOL became unavailable, and handlers dead or confused – hence  a new system was needed.

As such, the Bilderburgers got the Bohemian Grove on a conference call, patched in the Illuminati from a bunker in Cuba and raised the spectre of the global transmission – a single word – to begin The Operations.

The line was silent for a moment, then a proper but thin and reedy voice asked, “but tell me then, how can we release that one word in a manner that everyone will read it?”

To which another dis-intermediated voice confidently said, “I have just the right idea.” #covfefe

Related: ird059-conet-project-booklet (pdf)

Stationery in Cinema, vol. 2 (passports, currencies, radio)

Reviewing a dossier in a show called “They Spy”

Due to an affection for stationery, letters, scrapbooks and whatnot, i notice such items when viewing moving pictures. As such, i am often inclined to capture screenshots for my memory.

Sometimes, oddly enough, these are printed and put into scrapbooks in a sorta meta-remix. Either way, to keep these tidbits close at hand, assorted specimen are collected within.

Passports, variety 1,  in “The Americans”
Passports, variety 2,  in “The Americans”
Shortwave radio in “The Americans”
Currencies, various, in “The Americans”