Tazer Guns and Security blankets in The Panic Room.

Security is big business in South Africa. Insecurity is even bigger business because it manufactures the need for security and as the need for security is established the industry develops the products and market to service that need. It offers Ultra security next to Ultra Security Max. It offers maximum ultra security next to maximum ultra security rapid – you choose. “gimme the big gun too and the bullets, the diamond tipped ones”.

The question of which came first insecurity or security is no longer relevant. Protecting the children is what is important and the more security measures you see the more threatening the world seems to be so best top up that security to be sure. In the coldness of insecurity you’ll always need a security blanket If I can make you frightened I can sell you anything. I can sell you war out there and a tazer gun in here. Society is one big weapon of mass destruction so please join me in my panic room where we can be secure together.

There’s an orbiting swirl of security in the bank section of Killarney Mall: Men with hands on guns navigate the architecture in a different way. Meanwhile, we shop. In the FNB bank I’m smiling and chatting with the woman behind the counter a she deals with my foreign exchange. With purple painted nails she counts out ten fifty and twenty five twenty Rand notes. “everyone wants change”. I'm explaining why I want the smaller denominations of rand “but nobody wants to give change” she continues counting out. “It’s like there’s no change in the world.”

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