Films in this programme

#098 Visible / Invisible

The Ongoing Battle Between Cameras and Humans

From closed-circuit cameras to IP cameras and webcams, the mechanical eye for observation and recording is constantly being upgraded. Nowadays, we are trapped in a surveillance network formed by cameras. These include cameras installed by the government and businesses that are working over our heads without breaks as well as the cheap webcams used by citizens to monitor their private properties, families, and pets. In addition, Covid has also boosted the use of thermal cameras, which can detect our body temperature and determine whether we can access certain public spaces. There seems to be no place left for humans to hide.

For this new channel programme Visible / Invisible, Zheng Wan dived into the IMPAKT archive to research our relation to camera surveillance. The video artworks selected here show that we don’t have to be overly pessimistic. Along with surveillance technologies, camouflage and escape strategies have also evolved. The battle between cameras and humans over visibility is always ongoing.

With works by: Tran T. Kim-Trang, Michelle Teran, Jean-Pierre Sens, Joachim Friis, Kyle Mcdonald, Martine Stig and Mert Akbal, Frederic Ehlers and Luca Forcucci.

This Channel programme was created by Zheng Wan during her internship in 2021

Films in this programme

Ocularis: Eye Surrogates
Tran, T. Kim–Trang
(USA 1997, video, 21:00)
Big Brother is watching you! This footage is followed by recordings of ‘victims’ relating the experiences they have had with...
Life a User’s Manual
Michelle Teran, 2003
The title Life: a user’s manual is taken from a novel of the same name by Georges Perec. Artist Michelle Teran guided the audiences...
Chance Meetings 3
Jean-Pierre Sens
(NL 1997, 16 mm, 5:00)
Chance Meetings 3 is a play between camera and subject, between mere observation and actual voyeurism which borders on the edges of...
Negotiations of In/Visibility: Surveillance in Hito Steyerl’s How Not to be Seen
Joachim Friis (2021)
In this paper, author Joachim Friis analyzed Hito Steyerl’s artwork How Not to be Seen: A Fucking Didactic Educational .MOV File...
Exhausting a Crowd
Kyle Mcdonald
(NL 2015)
Inspired by the classic book from Georges Perec, “An Attempt at Exhausting a Place in Paris”, written from a bench over three days...
Martine Stig
(NL 2020, Interview & Online platform)
WeAlgo is an online meeting place where participants can communicate through self-designed digital facemasks. It uses facial recognition...
Mert Akbal, Frederic Ehlers & Luca Forcucci
“Thermal” is a poetic audio-visual work that explores the relation of the body and heat energy with subtle analytical images and...
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