The COVID-19 pandemic and #BlackLivesMatter movement are influencing various communities worldwide on an unprecedented scale, and revealing many hidden truths buried, not only in our communities, but also our history. People now raise their voice in both physical and virtual spaces through various media to transform the society. But sometimes those voices are filtered, modified and conveyed to others in a way people don’t want or expect. What if we use algorithms to unfilter those voices to discover the common thread that binds them? What would we see if we unfilter or bring to the surface these voices that have suppressed? “WhySpace” is an experimental room setup that turns the spotlight on opinions and voices that have been neglected. The artists have retrieved tweets and web posts that have been channeled into this A/V installation using an algorithm developed by them. The artists seek to explore and understand the motivations that fuel a global movement like #BLM. This installation invites the audience to enter a space where they are surrounded by words, voices and images related to the #BLM movement in order to provoke and encourage introspection regarding the state we find the world in currently.
The exhibition aims to raise awareness of our ambivalence about the role of technology and social networking in and on social issues. On the one side, it enables participation and access to information and content production; on the other side it exacerbates issues of surveillance, privacy, and polarises political views.
- Ryo Hajika
- Amit Barde
- Natalie Walker
- September 9-13, 2020 – Ars Electronica 2020 / Garden Aotearoa New Zealand