SSN Arts Prize


The Surveillance Studies Network (SSN) is dedicated to the study of surveillance in all its forms. It promotes innovative and multidisciplinary work on surveillance, including research that bridges different academic fields, furthers the understanding of surveillance in wider society, and informs information policy and political debate. As part of its mandate, the SSN seeks to encourage creative and artistic practices engaging with the topic of surveillance. As such, the Surveillance Studies Network Arts Prize is a bi-annual award that recognizes and publicly supports artwork centred on critical readings of surveillance.


All submissions are adjudicated by a committee composed of members of the SSN board. The award for first prize is £250 and up to three honourable mentions will receive £100. Additionally, the winner and each honourable mention will receive a fee waiver for conference registration at the forthcoming SSN Conference, as well as coverage in a Surveillance & Society forum and the blink blog discussing the work. Travel support may also be available, funds permitting. Winning artists will also receive an invitation to showcase their work, or a representation of it, in a virtual exhibition during SSN’s conference.


The nominated work must be an original art project that was produced or exhibited in the 2020, 2021, or 2022 calendar years. The following criteria will be used to adjudicate the nominations:

  1. demonstrates a thematic fit with the critical orientation of the Surveillance Studies Network and Surveillance & Society,
  2. exhibits theoretical sophistication;
  3. produces new and unique ways of thinking about modes of surveillance;
  4. and promotes audience engagements.

Self-nominations are welcome.


SSN Arts Prize 2020-2022

past winners

Elham Fatapour
“homemade satellite dishes”

sava saheli singh
“Screening Surveillance”

James Coupe
“Watchtower: A Machine For Living”


Jessica-Maria Nassif
“Mix, Match, and Start from Scratch”

Wendy Wong
“Linguistic racism and the sonic surveillance of speech in schools”

Florian van Zandwijk
“Vision Processor: EN471”

Pip Thornton

Julia Scher
“Predictive Engineering3”

Rose Butler
“Come and Go”

Stéfy McKnight
“hunting for prey”