Shadows of the State – Lewis Bush

Congratulations to Lewis Bush who has published work shown at Photo Scratch! We’re so thrilled for him!

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Shadows of the State

Shown at Photo Scratch in December 2016 and newly published by Brave Books, Shadows of the State examines the strange phenomena of ‘numbers stations’. These are mysterious shortwave radio broadcasts of coded messages believed to be intended for undercover agents.

The project adapts open source research and satellite image interpretation techniques in order to investigate these broadcasts and to locate the likely transmitter sites of thirty of these transmissions. These sites are then mapped using high resolution satellite imagery and the signals themselves are made visible to in the form of radio spectrograms alongside recordings and extensive information about each station.

Shadows of the State is partly about the possibility of turning the practices and technologies of espionage back against their users, and in doing so bringing some light and accountability to a world which exists in stark contrast to these things. But it is also about the difficulties of exploring a topic where certainty is almost impossible to come by, and where paranoia, conspiracy and misinformation collide constantly with objective fact.

More information:

Available to order from

Twitter: @lewiskaybush

Instagram: @lewis__bush

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