Despite being, for the most part, spared from the kind of violence that has afflicted other parts of the country and becoming significantly less dangerous over the past decade, Mexico City continues to struggle with safety. Starting in 2008 the city invested hundreds of millions of dollars installing almost 12 thousand security cameras and creating a Center for Emergency Assistance and Citizen Protection. The program is often used within the political discourse as a claim that the government is actively combating crime. However amidst the program the 2011 riots in London, one of the cities with most widespread use of CCTV, broke out, and new research was published showing that security cameras did little to curtail crime.
I became interested in documenting the use of security cameras in the city, because of the strange paradox that they present. On the one hand the cameras are ubiquitous and yet people hardly ever notice them. In fact large part of the government’s campaign involved bringing more attention to them. I am particularly interested in the way in which public and semi-public spaces are affected by the simple act of being observed and the space itself becomes the subject. This project became an exercise in observation, looking at those who are being observed and those who are doing the observing. The hope for these pictures is to raise awareness of the role security cameras have in public spaces and encourage discussion about their use.