Comprised of a string of seven hyperlinked Japanese tanka poems, the text of Law of the Sea draws directly (and only) on vocabulary used in international news articles covering the geo-politics of the Caspian sea, namely the ongoing dispute and treaties forged between its five littoral states Iran, Azerbaijan, Russia, Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan, over its subsoil resources, military borders and the potential prospect of pipelines. Its title invokes the United Nations Convention of the Law of the Sea, a comprehensive declaration dictating and regulating how nations can interact with large bodies of water. The narrative reads, in the cadence of journalistic rhetoric, of an aquatic revolution that includes a seismic shift in the balance of power between land and sea, an inversion of territorial invasion, mediated through poetry associated with centuries old, furtive exchanges between lovers.
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Law of the Sea, 2019. Hyperlinked PDF. Commissioned by Yarat Contemporary Art Space, Baku, Azerbaijan.