Remote Sensing

A film by Ursula Biemann

2001 | 53 minutes | Color | DVD | Order No. 02764


In Biemann’s film, she traces the routes and reasons of women who travel across the globe for work in the sex industry. By using the latest images from NASA satellites, the film investigates the consequences of the U.S. military presence in southeast Asia as well as European migration politics. This essay takes an earthly perspective on cross-border circuits, where women have emerged as key actors and expertly links new geographic technologies to the sexualization and displacement of women on a global scale. By revealing how technologies of marginalization affect women in their sexuality, REMOTE SENSING aspires to displace and resignify the feminine within sexual difference and cultural representation.


“An artistic triumph, Bieman's tape provides a searing account of the parasitic networks of global, sexual trafficking in the digital age.”

Timothy Murray CoCurator of CTHEORY Multimedia, Cornell University

“Biemann navigates a unique path through critical dialogues on the global sex trade, feminist geography and media activism and her video will become a natural resource for anyone interested in these areas."

Lisa Parks Dept. of Film Studies, UC Santa Barbara

"Hand in hand with her critique of digital technologies of visualization, Biemann constructs a thought-provoking visual rendering of instances of national impoverishment as well as of the strategies for economic development that rest on the exploitation of women’s sexual labor."

Films for the Feminist Classroom


  • Govett-Brester Art Gallery, New Zealand
  • Museum of Modern Art, New York
  • Duisburg Film Festival
  • Museum of Modern Art, Stockholm
  • Lux Centre, London
  • Feminale International Women's Film Festival, Cologne
  • Whitechapel Gallery, London


Ursula Biemann

More recently she turned to ecology, oil and water with major art projects including Black Sea Files (2005), Egyptian Chemistry (2012) and Deep Weather (2013). Her video installations are exhibited worldwide in museums and the International Art Biennials of Liverpool, Sharjah, Shanghai, Thessaloniki, Sevilla, Istanbul, and Venice.

Her research is based at the Zurich University for the Arts and she is publisher of several books, e.g. "Stuff it" the Video Essay in the Digital Age (2003), Mission Reports - Artistic Practice in the Field (2008). She is currently working on a new piece on the Ecuadorian Amazon, commissioned by Broad Art Museum at Michigan State University.

Biemann has a BFA from the School of Visual Arts and attended the Whitney Independent Study Program in New York (1988). She received a doctor honoris causa in Humanities by the Swedish University Umea and the Prix Meret Oppenheim, the national art award of Switzerland. (03/19)


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