Permanent State of Exception was filmed on B&W super 8mm film stock, capturing images of the present, on a medium from the past, in order to contemplate possible futures. The title comes from philosopher Giorgio Agamben who has noted that in times of strife, the powers-that-be may may exceptions to commonly held ethics. Those in power may collaborate with unhindered market forces, disregarding human rights and removing environmental protections. Such a state of exception to ethical standards may have profound implications which are explored poetically and symbolically through the moving image.
Permanent State of Exception is composed of original footage shot by Allen Killian-Moore over a period of four years in Minneapolis, Pittsburgh, Duluth Minnesota, Rural Wisconsin, and along the northern shore of Lake Superior. The sound design features portions of radio broadcasts from throughout the last century, while the musical score was written and performed by Andy McCormick of the band Dreamland Faces. The film also features Sarah LaPonte as The Tea Drinker. Sarah is a multi-disciplinary artist based in Braddock Pennsylvania who works with photography and assemblage art.