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Mark Duggan

Forensic Architecture to exhibit new evidence on the Mark Duggan killing

The police shooting of Mark Duggan triggered the 2011 London riots – but new evidence is challenging the official account of his death

Turner Prize-nominated collective Forensic Architecture will present new evidence about the 2011 police killing of Mark Duggan at London’s the Institute of Contemporary Arts this autumn.

The exhibition will shed new light on the shooting, which triggered the 2011 London riots. For example, the collective has concluded that Duggan couldn’t have been holding a gun when he was shot – evidence that undermines the official accounts given by police, and reveals new possibilities, including one that police may have planted the firearm after Duggan was killed. 

“Our investigation demonstrates that independent civil society groups, empowered by new media technologies, are capable of holding the police and their oversight bodies to account,” Forensic Architecture’s director, Eyal Weizman, said in a statement.

“Events in the US and elsewhere show that this is more necessary than ever. As our work on police violence around the world has shown us, long histories of systemic and structural racism all too often become visible in the split-second actions of police officers, and in the subsequent efforts by the institutions around those officers to explain and justify their actions,” he added.

Duggan, 29, was killed in Tottenham, north London, in 2011 while allegedly travelling with a gun in a shoebox in the seat next to him in a taxi. Police officers pulled the car over and claimed that Duggan was holding the gun when he was shot. No DNA or evidence links Duggan to the gun found next to him.

Forensic Architecture’s work will be curated by Tottenham Rights, an activist community group that focuses on police violence in London. The ICA’s director, Stefan Kalmár, said in a statement that since beginning work with Forensic Architecture, “a confluence of connected crises – first the pandemic, then the subsequent economic fallout, and now the global response to the lynching of George Floyd – have exposed the endemic, indeed systematic, inequality in contemporary Britain, giving this exhibition, and the work of Tottenham Rights and Forensic Architecture, more urgency than ever.”

Watch a video presenting Forensic Architecture’s investigation below.

Forensic Architecture will display their evidence at London’s the Institute of Contemporary Arts this autumn