Posts Tagged ‘cctv’

Dundee Contemporary Arts NEon 2016

November 13th, 2016

The artwork reforms this information and data creating parallel realities. At the heart of this work lies an interest in the urban environment, the networks of cameras and sensors to be found there, and the associated issue of privacy and alienation. The work sits in the middle of concepts for smart cities, The Internet of Things( IOT) and the new technologies that monitors the real time environment. In appearance, the Nemesis Machine is like Big Brother parsed through the lens of the Internet of things. It gives visitors a bird’s eye view of a cybernetic cityscape, where skyscrapers are constructed of silicon and circuit boards.

stanza_neon 284-web The Nemesis Machine stanza_neon-299-web

The Nemesis Machine

 

New Commission At Winchester Science Centre using transport data and surveillance cameras

August 22nd, 2014

The artwork “The Agency At The End Of Civilisation” is a real time interpretation of the data of the Internet of Cars project using the UK car number plate recognition system aligned with real time images from one hundred CCTV cameras in the region of South of England. The installation presents all this as a spatialised audio experience of spoken texts and generative visuals. The audience engages with the work as observer (of the surveillance and recorded space) looking at 24 screens, a dozen speakers, and a labyrinth of CCTV cameras built as an art installation presented on a plinth. http://stanza.co.uk/agency/index.

The Agency At The End Of Civilisation. By Stanza

The Agency At The End Of Civilisation. By Stanza

The Emergent City. Data from the city as hybrid artwork. Centre des Arts d’Enghien-les-Bains. Paris. France. 2014

July 22nd, 2014
The Emergent City. By Stanza

The Emergent City. A Life From Complexity to The City of Bits. By Stanza

The Emergent City. A Life From Complexity to The City of Bits. By Stanza

The Emergent City. A Life From Complexity to The City of Bits. By Stanza

The Emergent City. A Life From Complexity to The City of Bits. By Stanza

The Emergent City. A Life From Complexity to The City of Bits. By Stanza

The Emergent City. A Life From Complexity to The City of Bits.

The Emergent City. A Life From Complexity to The City of Bits.

Stanza er en av kunstnerne som stiller ut under kunst- og teknologibiennalen Metamorf. Her er tradisjonelle intervjuredskaper avleggs.

May 3rd, 2014
The Emergent City. A Life From Complexity to The City of Bits. By Stanza

The Emergent City. A Life From Complexity to The City of Bits. By Stanza

Lyden av Trondheim

– Penn og papir? Du gjør det på gamlemåten, ser jeg.

Stanza er en av kunstnerne som stiller ut under kunst- og teknologibiennalen Metamorf. Her er tradisjonelle intervjuredskaper avleggs.

Det blinker og durer fra titalls små lys og propeller inne på visningsrommet til Trøndelag senter for samtidskunst. På gulvet ligger det et nett med ledninger, høytalere og elektroniske komponenter som sammen ligner en storby sett fra fugleperspektiv.

Britiske Stanza er en internasjonalt anerkjent kunstner som blant annet var en av de første til å bruke internett i kunstnerisk øyemed. Han har brukt ti år på å utvikle skulpturen «The Emergent City» til det den er i dag.

Gjør bylivet til kunst

– Skulpturen mottar informasjon fra sensorer jeg har plassert på forskjellige steder i Trondheim sentrum. Sensorene registrerer endringer i bymiljøet, det kan være lyder, lys, luftfuktighet og vibrasjoner, forteller han. Denne informasjonen visualiseres gjennom den elektroniske miniatyrbyen. Det er altså data, ikke maling, stein eller tekstiler, som er materiale hos Stanza.

– Gjør det at kunsten din fort kan bli veldig abstrakt?

– Egentlig ikke. Jeg skjønner at det kan oppfattes slik, men skulpturen behandler dataen den mottar og gjør denne lesbar, sier han, og forteller at skulpturen opererer på to nivå: Det første er det rent estetiske, det skulpturelle. Det andre nivået er det performative, hvordan Trondheim og byens innbyggere påvirker kunsten.

– Det er ikke selve teknologien, men det den registrerer, som er viktig. Kunsten er ikke her inne i dette visningsrommet, den er der ute, sier kunstneren og peker mot glassfasaden og gatelivet utenfor.

 

Større enn storebror

Et viktig aspekt ved Stanzas kunst blir dermed at den foregår i sanntid.

– Dette blir noe annet enn det å se «Mona Lisa», for eksempel. Der har du et uforanderlig verk i fastsatte omgivelser. Jeg bruker blant annet overvåkningskameraer fra London i denne installasjonen, som gir direkte bilder av hva som skjer i byens gater, forteller han.

Et annet sentralt tema er nettopp overvåkning og skillet mellom det private og det offentlige rom. Ideen om panoptikon, det at én eller få personer kan overvåke mange, blir aktualisert.

– Verkene mine kommenterer forskjellige fremtidsrettede scenarioer. Mennesker overøses i stadig større grad med informasjon, hele tiden. Jeg mener at vi må bli flinkere til å lese denne informasjonen fortere og forstå hvilken rolle hver enkelt spiller i denne sammenhengen, sier Stanza. Han beskriver et scenario der alt en person foretar seg når hun går ut av døren, hver eneste handling, bevegelse, lyd og vibrasjon, blir sporet, overvåket og kartlagt.

– Verden vi lever i er mye mer kompleks enn George Orwells opprinnelige visjon om at storebror ser deg. This is the Mother of Big Brother, slår Stanza fast.

Blikk for detaljer

Kunst- og teknologibiennalen Metamorf arrangeres nå for tredje gang. Temaet er «Lost in Transition».

– «Transition» betyr overgang. Små overganger skjer hele tiden i hverdagen vår, men vi legger ikke så ofte merke til forandringens gang. For eksempel ser vi at en blomst vokser, men vi er ikke i stand til å observere selve prosessen, forteller kurator Espen Gangvik. Biennalen foregår på Trøndelag senter for samtidskunst, Babel visningsrom for kunst, visningsrommet Rake og på Gråmølna, med 16 utstillinger i tillegg til konferanser og konserter.

– Utstillingen på Gråmølna er i stor grad orientert mot å undersøke mulighetene som teknologi kan tilføre kunsten. En av kunstnerne som stiller ut her er nederlenderen Marnix de Nijs, han har laget en interaktiv reise gjennom et landskap som er generert av fotografi folk har lagt ut på internett. Publikum beveger seg gjennom dette landskapet, som projiseres på en stor skjerm, sier kuratoren.

Et kunstnerpar som bokstavelig talt belyser små endringer vi ellers ikke legger merke til, er Evelina Domnitch og Dmitry Gelfand. På Babel viser de «Hydrogeny»; en installasjon bestående av en vanntank det strømmer hydrogenbobler ut av. Mens tanken produserer hydrogen, projiseres et laserlys mot den, noe som gjør at hydrogenboblene blir synlige for publikum, i et vidt fargespekter.

– Det ligger noe vakkert i dette med overganger. Det sies at det eneste som er konstant i universet er forandring. Vi er fortryllende fortapt i forandringens rom, mener Gangvik.

http://www.adressa.no/kultur/article9593901.ece

 

 

The Emergent City. A Life From Complexity to The City of Bits. By Stanza

The Emergent City. A Life From Complexity to The City of Bits. By Stanza

 

“Data as Culture” artwork made for the Open Data Institute (ODI).

November 30th, 2012

Stanza dtata artworkI have just been commissioned and unveiled my artwork  made for the  Open Data Institute (ODI), and curated by Julie Freeman .  The work  is part  of “Data as Culture”…. “As data becomes more accessible to artists, as it opens up for use as a raw material, we are seeing more of its integration into works that explore environmental socio-political and economic aspects of society.

By utilising data in an experiential way, this selection of works pulls data out of the virtual domain and into our physical world. The exhibition provokes discussion around what open data is, how it informs and affects us, and how we interpret it in a way that is meaningful.”

Body 01000010011011110110010001111001 (2012) By Stanza. Body is a sculpture which responds to the emergent properties of the environment in South London where the artist’s wireless sensor network is situated. It represents the changing life and complexity of urban space as a dynamic, kinetic artwork. Real-time environmental data is embodied in Stanza’s life-size sculpture assembled from computer components and acrylic slices of his own physique. In ‘Body 01000010011011110110010001111001’ the urban environment provides a dynamic flickering and clicking sentience to the otherwise inert structure, reflecting the personal level of influence data has on an individual.

also see

www.stanza.co.uk/body/index.html

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

British artist Stanza wins SHARE PRIZE 2012 in Torino for Capacities. A piece of work using real time data of the city.

November 1st, 2012
The British artist Stanza  wins SHARE PRIZE 2012 in Torino for Capacities. A piece of work using real time data of the city. This artwork captures the changes over time in the environment (city) and represents the changing life and complexity of space as an emergent artwork. Its an artwork about the internet of things, smart cities and connecting spaces.
British artist Stanza In Italy

Jury Statement

What is the role of art today, in this moment of social transition towards the city of the future? It was from this perspective that the artists interpreted the theme Open Your City, exploring the key concepts word by word. The short-list of the Jury reflects the reappearing artistic interpretation of the modern urban landscape as system, where the solid element is replaced by the message, the information and the database, a real, but dematerialized city. Artists have been short-listed by an international jury, consisting of Simona Lodi, Carlo Ratti, Bruce Sterling and Mirjam Struppek, on the basis of the artistic value of their work and its relevance to the Share Prize theme.

Capacities: Real Time Complex – Connected Cities by British artist Stanza is an installation dedicated to the complexity of life in an environment. Changes in each of the spaces are monitored in real time, as they give rise to constant tensions, highlighting the behaviour of complex systems and the emergent properties that appear. In this case the organism is the city and not the single individual; it is the entire urban habitat as a whole, revealing its nature as a multifaceted system. The installation is the real-time mirror image of everything that changes, gathering huge amounts of data that are transformed aesthetically into a physical copy of the city, made up of cables, lights and sensors that represent shifts in environmental parameters measured numerically. The obsessive focus is on the observation of environmental data by gathering measurement on temperature, light, atmospheric pressure, noise and the sounds of the city outside the museum. Gathering digital data on the environment has become an art, and art has become a data set rather than a collection of molecules. The short-list of the Jury reflects the reappearing artistic interpretation of the modern urban landscape as system, where the solid element is replaced by the message, theinformation and the database, a real, but dematerialized city.

Le parole OPEN YOUR CITY sono la traccia tematica che ha guidato la mostra di Share Prize. Il premio ha come obiettivo scoprire, promuovere e sostenere le arti in epoca digitale. La selezione delle opere finaliste della mostra è dedicata agli artisti che interpretano l’innovazione come linguaggio di espressione artistica, in ogni modo e forma. Una giuria internazionale composta da Simona Lodi, Carlo Ratti, Bruce Sterling e Mirjam Struppek hanno scelto gli artisti in base all’aderenza al tema e al valore estetico dell’opera.

Dichiarazione della giuria

Quale è il ruolo dell’arte, in questo momento di transizione sociale verso la città del futuro? In quest’ottica gli artisti hanno interpretato il tema Open Your City, sviscerando le parole chiave. La short-list della giuria riflette l’interpretazione del riapparire artistico del paesaggio urbano moderno come sistema, dove l’elemento solido è sostituito dal messaggio, dalle informazioni e dai database, una città reale ma smaterializzata.

Capacities: Real Time Complex – Connected Cities dell’artista inglese Stanza dedica la sua installazione alla complessità della vita in determinato ambiente. Ogni ambiente è sottoposto a cambiamenti continui che sono monitorati in tempo reale. I cambiamenti portano continua tensione e stressano il concetto di linearità ed evidenziano le emergenze che compaiono. In questo caso l’organismo è la città e non il singolo cittadino ma l’intero complesso urbano, tracciandone il profilo come sistema multiforme. L’installazione è lo specchio in real-time di ciò che si modifica, raccogliendo grosse quantità di dati trasformati esteticamente in una copia della città ma fatta di cavi, luci e sensori che esprimono il passaggio degli elementi ambientali raccolti in forma numerica. L’attenzione insistente è osservare i dati ambientali raccogliendo la temperatura, la luce, la pressione atmosferica, il rumore, e il suono della città fuori dal museo. Raccogliere elementi numerici che riguardano l’ambiente è diventata un’arte e l’arte e’ diventata un insieme di dati piuttosto che un insieme di molecole.

http://www.stanza.co.uk/capacities/index.html

 

 

Art that explores questions raised by modern society – about privacy, surveillance culture….

September 23rd, 2012

STANZA’s art explores questions raised by modern society – about privacy, surveillance culture, and who owns the data that is regularly collected about all of us – often using modern technologies to create his pieces. Since he first started exhibiting his works in 1984, STANZA has strived to create cutting edge art that deals with current issues. In the process he has won several impressive awards, including an AHRC arts fellowship, and has seen his work featured in over 50 different exhibitions globally.

Ahead of a installation of one of his works “Capacities” in Ghent, Belgium in September, Solomon Radley met with him, in front on a computer monitor at his studio in South London, to talk in depth about what he does over coffee.

Hey, how’s it going? Would you begin by telling me a bit about what you do?

STANZA: The things that I’m interested in are ‘surveillance space’, which is the idea of the city as having become a panopticon – this idea that we’re in a prison and we can be observed at all times, from all perspectives, all at once, and particularly in real time.

I use various technologies to do that, like CCTV and wireless sensor networks. Over the years, firstly I’ve developed a strong understanding of what these technologies can do in terms of learning about them, but also I’m having to develop for them, so I’ve learned how to develop hardware and software. You may think I’m a technologist – I see myself as a creative technologist, and I also see that artists are engineers, so they have to understand the technologies that they use, and the mediums that they use in order to get output.

To bring that into perspective, we can look at some artworks…

Sure thing. Would you expand on your thought that the city is a sort of prison?

STANZA: Urban Generation is a piece I did in relation to this idea of the city being a panopticon. Let’s say, in modernist terms, an artist would go out and collect assets – he might use a recording device or a camera – it would be a still, linear asset, and it would never change. It’s possible to actually conceive of the city as a moving physical entity, moving forward in time all the time. How is it possible to use new technologies to actually gain a representation of this, and use it in a culturally meaningful way?

Urban Generation attempts to imagine the world from everyone else’s perspective all at once. If I’m giving a talk, what I try and do is – to illustrate the conceptual shift – I say: “I’d like you to close your eyes, and I’d like you to imagine yourself in a place in London. I’m going to do the same and I’m going to take a single mental snapshot, and I’d like you all in the room to take your single snapshot. Now, I’d like you to imagine the view of the people sitting next to you to your left and to your right, so you have three images multiplied together. There’s 300 people in the room; I’d like you to merge all of these 300 images together. And now not like a film, (because if we used a film we’d be recording the same images) what I’d like you to do is to move these images forward in real time.”

This is the idea I’m trying to capture with this piece of work.

A lot of your work is concerned with the question of who owns the information that is regularly collected about people, and with re-claiming that information. Tell me about this idea.

STANZA: I make artworks that arise from my research into these themes – the themes being ‘control space’ and ‘surveillance space’ and issues with privacy. What I’m doing, which is sort of new ground, is that I’m hacking access to a network and re-appropriating the data and information, and I’m re-contextualizing to give it a wider meaning. I want to show that you can do something positive with this data.

Other works where I’m interested in the control and ownership of data include this website called GenoMixer, where I fully sequenced my blood. In a sense this looks like artist self-portraiture, but I was interested in thedomain space – the public domain space – that’s inside our bodies.

We have this huge line of code – 3.3 billion letters – and it basically has an economic value. The proposal here is to IPO (Initial Public Offering) the project on the stock market, and to give everyone a share of the derivable intellectual royalties. For example, if somebody else wanted to investigate your DNA in a medical program they’d have to pay you. If some other company discovered the cancer gene because you were on the police forensic database you could say “No it’s copyrighted – it’s on the GenoMixer database”.

It just so happens that I also made a series of self-portraits with them…

One of the most obvious types of information that is commonly collected about the general public is video images gathered by CCTV, and this is something you often look at. What are your thoughts about CCTV?

STANZA: Let’s look at “Urban Generation – trying to imagine the world from everyone else’s perspective, all at once“. What we’ve got here is: each square on this four-by-four grid is making calls to over 100 cameras in London in real time. This is a parallel reality, using live network data to re-appropriate it over the network and use it for something else. For example, this could be used as an extension on landscape painting.

Why this has become quite interesting, and the reason I mention these modernist aspects that are fixed, is that this work is never the same. You could look at it even now, on a different monitor, and it would be different: It’s not the Mona Lisa – where every time you look at the work you experience the same thing – there’s an added problem here.

Another interesting question here is: Is what we’re looking at the artwork? On July 7th in 2005 they switched this entire network off because of the terrorist attacks. Well my system still worked, it’s just that the output – which is what connects a viewer to the system – is shifted.

This [Public Domain Responsive Architecture Facade] is the same concept using CCTV, observing the whole of the city but making it transparent. Why would you want to make your movements open and transparent? Why would you want to let CCTV be seen by everybody? This is a building with its outer surfaces displaying images that are embedded in the city – all the stuff on the outside of the building is shifting in terms of the real time properties of that city. In a sense, you (as the observed individual) become part of the building and part of the city, and this opens up the idea of transparent architecture and transparent space.

Public Domain is another work along the same theme, where I gave CCTV cameras away to members of the public, to open up this idea of CCTV networks. People sometimes say that they’ve got nothing to hide, and to nothing to fear…I think that’s a problematic statement. I’m not coming down on a particular side of the fence here, but it seems to me that we’ve opened Pandora’s box, and there’s a whole series of legislative and ethical issues that aren’t being addressed.

Hopefully what I’m doing in these artworks is to draw attention to the fact that there’s a whole series of potential problems that we’re walking in to.

You also play with collected data, which you use to create interactive works or installations where real-time changes are caused by environmental factors…

STANZA: We’ve already looked at my CCTV system. There’s another one, which uses wireless sensors/wireless nodes. You scatter them across the city, and they talk to each other in a network grid.

This research started in 2004 as a result of an AHRC grant that I was awarded, and I was trying to find a system I could use as open source hardware and software, that would monitor the whole city space. I’ve scattered these sensors around a city to generate visualisations and sonifications in various cities. For my first project [Sensity] they were output onto a visual globe.

So, now what I was interested in doing is looking at this real time data, that’s now everywhere, and seeing if I could do something else with it – if I could make art with it.

Equally, in Sonicity I deliberately put a whole load of speakers on the floor and connected them all up to make it look like a map, and somewhere else (in another part of the world) that data is being collected from my network and being spat out onto the internet via an XML stream. In arty terms, maybe I’m “painting with data” – the data has become the medium. With this data I’m painting a sonification of the real time landscape.

The second thing I was trying to think about, as part of this thinking process, was all the stuff that’s being collected about us – not just my data, but tax data and medical records – which could be used because of the way it changes and shifts from one thing to the next to power other events:

With CapacitiesI made…let’s call it a sculpture…a sculpture of computer parts that looks like a city, and would be powered by events changing somewhere else in real time. In this version of Capacities, all the lights and fans, and all the parts that change, do so because of other things happening in the world in real time.

The reason I’m trying to do that is that there seem to be other values that people are missing in terms of the things that are happening to us, and the world, in real time. We’ve become bodies residing in a ‘data space’. Everything around us is the data space and by default we interact with it – even small movements displace millions of atoms.

I conceive of this post-modern world in which movements are just moving a series of 0s and 1s. I can measure the 0s and 1s that I’m displacing by moving around. This interactive process is embedded in the work by default.

Visitors to a Gallery… is quite an important work, in that it opens up the gallery space as an artwork. For example, these two people that are pictured aren’t actually in this room – they’re in another room in another part of the gallery, so they’re embedded in the artwork that you’re viewing. Everybody in the architectural space becomes part of the artwork, and this happens in real time – it’s not recorded, and it’s not a film. So I utilize the technology in the space (the CCTV system).

Secondly, what’s happening here is that there are a series of proximity sensors that affect this as an algorithm – as you walk around this space all of these images oscillate/vibrate slightly.

So when you’re in the room, viewing this artwork, you’re at the same time generating an artwork for someone else in another room?

STANZA: And you’re in the work you’re viewing yourself, through your interaction with the sensors.

That’s also happening in Seeing Through Walls, where there are little cameras and monitors, so you become embedded in the same artwork as it’s being broadcast live, or in this piece where you can see through to people on the other side of the wall.

I was actually in a Greek club where they had something like that – the mirrors in the toilet let you see yourself, but also the women doing their makeup in the adjacent toilets…

STANZA: Ha! No wonder their ecomony’s gone down the pan…

Moving on from that, my work splits into this idea of using real time networks and investigating different ways of interacting with public space.

Here’s a strange project called The Binary Graffiti Club, where I got a load of people to dress up in hoodies with 0s and 1s on their backs, and they go round the city making binary graffiti – painting little coded messages onto the city.

Anything in particular?

STANZA: Well…no. I don’t want to be too specific about this, because… Well here’s a piece going back to the DNA project (the open source bit). If you sit in the gallery for…this has been online for seven years: If it was exhibited in a gallery you could get my open source DNA, and you could go off and replicate me, but it changes a letter once every second so you’d have to sit there for 104 years with a pen and paper. The same is true of the binary graffiti club – if you want to know what the message is, you have to sit there and transcribe it and translate it.

One letter from STANZA’s DNA code – the letters are shown in order, one per second for the 104 year project

This led from another piece of work – A City of Bits – as well as this performance that was laid down in the form of this sushi: I invited 12 people, after the disciples, and asked them to come and eat this coded sushi message. So, this is a coded message that they eat, and then they all put their own message back into a jar which I’ve now destroyed. I’ve transcribed those messages here…

You have a performance coming up in Texas soon – tell me a bit about what you’ll be doing.

STANZA: In Soundcities, using a recording device, I’ve been to all these different cities, recording sounds which are attached to Google Maps, and you can visit lots of cities in the world…

The key to this is the database; you can see the sounds, arranged in different categories, and you can create a performance by picking a selection of them and building up rhythms. This is what I do with my performances, except I have the same thing on a couple of machines, and I might mix it with sounds from churches, etc. It’s basically a live world tour of city sounds as music: the machines are connected to a mixing desk, images are coming from the website projects.

During the eight years I’ve been doing these performances, they’ve been heavily focused on the sounds of cities, the database live and soundmaps.

So this database can be used in performances, but the key here is that the database is open source, and other people can contribute to this community of sounds. There’s lots of other projects that have come from this, but the most important bit is this. This XML feed shows the sound, and its longitude/latitude, and although this is just a line of code it basically means that anyone else can use this to write their own apps.

What I’m doing that’s unique here is: it’s like an artist of the past allowing someone into their studio to work in parallel with them.

www.stanza.co.uk

The Art of Environmental Data By Stanza

June 11th, 2012

The Art of Environmental Data.

An interview with Stanza via email for Jack Stewart studying at the Manchester School of Architecture operating under the umbrella of the Remap Unit, which focus upon mapping and data collection to expose the latent and invisible qualities of the city.

Stanza Sensors On Google Maps

Stanza places sensors On Google maps 2006.

The Art of Environmental Data.

1. The Sensity Projects aim to record data in the emerging city environment; how do you feel the use of such data could be useful for architects and designers in informing their designs?

This is an area seems to be springing into the mainstream, led I believe by the notion of “the internet of things” and the business spin off potential. It is surprising that urban designers and architects haven’t embraced this work more quickly or recognised that at the very least there is opportunity here to integrate the space around us using these novel ad hoc sensor technologies. Some engineering firms have and are looking into this like ARUP and obviously wireless sensing tech is now big business.  I have been trying for some time to get on board with an architect with the idea of doing something like Façade (see below)

Sensity and its sister projects have gone along way to not only illuminating possible uses but and to demonstrate multiple scenarios.

Anyway to be specific, other scenarios that could be questioned from the data sets include, noise monitoring across spatial environments and how this is affected by a real time input. More specifically focused sensors could give data that can lead to conclusions about what types of material are best suited for a site, or even a “consciousness” of the space, as well as all the bio chemical possibilities.

Most of these types of systems themselves can also be “building management systems”. The data can not only be adapted for security and monitoring the social welfare of the space can be nurtured; it could feed back into a system designed to self regulate depending on the variables and properties imposed.

Stanza House Data Visualisation

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2. How do you feel that Sensity and Soundcities re-innovate and enrich the urban systems we currently operate in?

This has to be taken as two questions because of the underlying structure and objectives of these two separate projects.

Sensity for sure allows us to see or at least make more tangible the invisible in the world around us. Sensity supports this premise by producing new information that is changing real time. This information is being also affected by out default interactions with the space and the environment. The Sensity project allows us to speculate on the city itself as a living breathing space with its own DNA that evolves and mutates. This metaphorical approach allows a freedom to speculate that the spaces we design are in fact emergent entities and that various properties and variables can be monitored; ie the stresses of the space and “emotional” conditions are what make a space enjoyable habitable or even dangerous. Sensity can up pick on this.

Soundcities, because it works in a different way addresses issues that I describe as being more of the modernist age. However as noise and sound involve field recording (we are also presenting the art of environmental monitoring). However now we are taking about the sound we literally hear as we walk out of the door. Not just as noise (data) or as noise pollution but also as an appreciation of sound and how this not only affects the space but is the space.

The noise is the city, the noise is the music, the city is the orchestra and we are just conductors whose interactive actions compose this music as we walk around. What Soundcities does is create an open source archive, a resource where better speculative questions could be addressed. The unique XML feed system also allows other to make user interactions both software and hardware that can control the sounds or to make spatialisation and sonfications of the environment based on the analogue recorded sounds.

Image (c) Stanza Datacity art. Data from across the city.

3. Why do you feel the recording of emergent or changing data of the city is important?

It was my research as an artist that has led me here from fixed object and linear works about the city and urban design (i.e. paintings drawing) I then made interactive systems and closed generative systems.

I concluded that the next model was to adopt and create a real time system. My feeling for this is primarily based on my inquiry into how to work with “time” itself. These works are not archived. In Sensity the data is not recording; the works, the experience, ever exists in the present. It’s that moment that I am interested in making more of. I want to somehow get inside the idea of present time.

This present tense we all share with one another in a very equal way does not discriminate. The present second as it shifts to the next is the moment that I want to understand. So the question is slightly skewed as there is no “recording” in the Sensity process (I have yet to build in an archival set of data results as I haven’t been funded to take this further and this would be most useful i.e. to study a space over a longer time.

This is why the research is needed. To answer the why question?

4. Soundcities takes similar concepts from your previous work, but provides a platform for anybody with access to the net to add to. Do you feel this has richer content and why?

The soundcities content is different. Instead of being data sets and numbers that relate to the environment in real time the soundcities takes snapshots of the environment as sound that is recorded then placed online. The interesting thing now is the project is opened up for others allowing a re mixing or mash up. It allows these “others” to do with the “material” other things for example concerts and art installations. Using the XML feed other applications are created ie phone apps merged with you PS position or visualisation of noise across a space…all sorts of things are possible.

5. If architects were to inform their designs through data from Soundcities do you think there would be a social exclusion issue for those without access to the internet and why?

I think the sensors in Sensity project would be better for this sort of thing. However the issue becomes about the network, borders of control, and issues to do with sharing and protection. In my view it will get really interesting when dozens of spaces and buildings all link up in virtual space.  To create what I term ”The Third Space”. (This was a funding proposal rejected by the AHRC and The tech Strategy Board.

I suggest there are over lapping areas of the city which can only be found online ie merged cities online Madrid, London Paris can overlap. I will go intio  more details.  below.

6.  How would you consider to further develop your projects

I have many ideas for this but no money as I am not funded.

However is a summary  of The Third Space. The project seeks via practise based research to create novel artistic interfaces using environmental data.  Outputs from the research include sonifications, visualizations, and sculptural objects.

This work focused on data as a medium for artistic creativity and how meaningful and well as poetic experiences of space / environments may result from quantitative analysis of the results. The aim is to speculate on new ways of comparing, conceptualizing and then visualizing environmental data and real space.

I  proposed in a recent interview for The Internet of Things Council  (http://tinyurl.com/3trotzq) that future cities will be merged into real time connected up data cities. Not just one space, but a connection of networks and of real time information flows. I am now interested in developing deeper research over three years to question how this shared dataspace can overlap,  creating a new space in between, which multiple nodes can share.

The methodology involves collecting data from sensor networks, disseminating the computer techniques developed, and making artistic prototypes. The aim here is to give tangible form to this new space, the space where the cities overlap, presenting an alternative urban virtual environment and creating new artworks and installations.

Within “The Third Space”, the initial focus is on the data sets of noise, pollution, light, and temperature. In other words the sensors will initially monitor urban environments.

To achieve this I will connect up multiple spaces (cities / environments) using motes sensors and this will be published online via XML feeds. These new online spaces will in turn lead to newly created online bespoke interfaces. I then aim to demonstrate that there is a new and unique online avatar where the data overlaps creating the Third Space. I will speculate how the flow of the data can be set to affect the behaviour of the output environment.

I would network at least three cities spaces in real time for this project using custom sensing technology. Initial outputs will include a musical system / interface powered by the merged data to create a real time sonification of the Third Space

 

7. What would you say are the challenges we face in further developing and integrating data collection like Sensity into the urban realm?

The questions I  pursue to answer this include:-

– How can this information be meaningfully represented to new audiences?

– How can this data be displayed (visualisation and sonifications) in new and original ways and do the results create new ways of understanding the environment?

– What are wider social implications of opening up real time networks; who owns this space and what are the ethical implications of real time information systems for artworks?

Underpinning this work, are a whole series of potential problems about observation, surveillance, and the ethics of the control space. I research current surveillance systems and wireless sensor networks to  come to an understanding about the social and ethical implications of such technologies both in artworks as well as public domain space.

By building my own art systems and tools, (which support my research questions); I also aim to raise further questions about the ethics of the control space and surveillance culture.

 

Syncronicity By Stanza

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

8. How do you feel that artworks such as your own could shape a ‘future city’?

Future cities will be merged into real time connected up data cities. I believe there is a new social space that exists in between independent virtual data networks, a new avatar space. The Third Space and the work I have done before have becomes  a series of  artistic prototypes that offer new insights into networked spaces.

9. All of your projects are open source; what is your reasoning for this decision?

I don’t like the term open source or but my work endeavours to collapse the borders created by networks so there is a free flow and exchange through the system both for input and outputs of ideas and latterly resources which I call assets (the data and the information.

10. How do you feel projects such as your own pave the way for empowering and liberating the city dweller?

The aim in my work is to develop a more socially engaged practise, to embed a deeper context based on critical reflection regarding notions of privacy, surveillance space, control space and meaning of newly created  real time spaces.

11. Your data visualizations are stunning; what do you feel the importance is for translating the data your gather into something people can visualize and understand?

The objectives is both to create new artistic experiences questioning the notion of realtime environments while using of data as a medium and delivering creative outputs.

And also create work that reflects upon issues of privacy, and surveillance space.

I think I would get sidetracked here but maybe I could just say the objective is to create a new way of seeing and the experiencing the space/ environment. work ls around us.

By doing it this was not only do we see how we affect the systems but and most important the use ie users (us the people) are by default embedded in the interactive and responsive process. In other words we become part of the work.

I am interested in making systems where by default the users are the work, the artwork. Its a feedback  loop, every actions we have has a reaction, every reaction causes change, this change happens over time and its reflected back in front of us either as the changing world we experience and now as art.

12.  How do you feel your projects impact the ownership of the spaces they are deployed in?

This question needs an essay in its own right and goes off in another direction that’s interested me for some time. I made called Public Domain where I tackled this question head on. Public Domain uses live CCTV across the city to extend space and invoke impressions of transparency with architectural space. . Public Domain is an experimental approach to ownership in information in networks. Instead of the linear tree like system with the one central viewer, all the cameras and views (resulting data) are given away and all the views can be seen online by all. The data is mixed into an online collage, using specially created software viewable by all.

http://www.stanza.co.uk/public_domain_outside/index.html

 

http://www.stanza.co.uk/publicdomain/index.html

Another work “Visitors to a Gallery- referential self, embedded” uses the live CCTV system inside an art gallery to create a responsive mediated architecture. This artwork is responsive to the body in the data space. The visitors act as an intervention in the gallery space and become embedded in the artwork.  The idea of using the information inside the space is also to make the space transparent and extend the gallery space outwards. The gallery space is also extended virtually onto the internet as the feeds from the installations images are broadcast live. The visitors to the gallery thus become embedded in the artwork and this permeates the larger system of data and information over the internet.

Stanza 2012

 

 

 

 

 


 

Stanza part of the guest panel the global surveillance society at Barbican Centre London.

June 12th, 2011

Stanza part of the guest panel at Barbican Centre London.

Stanza Stars Of CCTV  series

 

Q&A with director Juan Manuel Biaiñ, London based British artist Stanza, Dr. Kirstie Ball, Director of Surveillance Studies Network, Simon Davies, Privacy International, Stephen Graham, Professor of Cities and Society at the Global Urban Research Unit and James Michael, privacy specialist and human rights lawyer.

Stanza
is a London based British artist who specializes in net art, data sculptures and networked space. He works with the concept of surveillance. His work has been shown at The Venice Biennale, Tate Britain, The Victoria and Albert Museum.

Dr. Kirstie Ball is a Senior Lecturer and Reader in Surveillance and Organization at the Open University and Director of Surveillance Studies Network.

Stephen Graham is an academic and author who researches cities and urban life. He is Professor of Cities and Society at the Global Urban Research Unit and is based in Newcastle University’s School of Architecture, Planning and Landscape.

Portraits Of The Artist Stanza

The City and Surveillance Culture. Artworks about privacy and transparency of information

May 13th, 2011
Stanza Artwork

Stanza Artwork. STANZA ON CCTV

Imagine walking out the door, and knowing every single action, movement, sound, micro movement, pulse, and thread of information is being tracked, monitored, stored, analysed, interpreted, and logged. The world we will live in seems to be a much bigger brother, than first realised, its the mother of big brother. _stanza

The city also has millions of CCTV. In essence the city is the biggest TV station in existence. Millions of hours worth of data are recorded every day by these cameras on city TV. One can take the sounds and images off live web streams and  re-represent them thus creating new interpretations of the city in the process.

The city already has a recorded source of data, CCTV is everywhere. Using  data  from cctv, you can bring the outside inside. Selected feeds are collected from around the  world in real  time.  These real time images are fed into a software system  where a series of specialised channels rework these images. The channels are always on, and  always changing, a constant  view  of  the world changing  and evolving around  the  clock.  This uses especially created  software  and technology to  randomly  find images in real time from anywhere in the network, in this case anywhere in the world.

The increase of technology infrastructure in the daily existence of a city means that technology will, more than ever be everywhere in our environment. Mobile data mining will be part of the fabric of the landscape.  We will be carrying this data in pods, phones and IDS cards. Everything is or will be tracked. CCTV, car sensors, tracking inside our phones and id card movement tracking in the guise of anti- terror activity.

The patterns we make, the forces we weave, are all being networked into retrievable data structures that can be re-imagined and sourced for information. These patterns all disclose new ways of seeing the world. The value of information will be a new currency as power change. The central issue that will develop will be the privilege and access to these data sources.

watershed-publicity

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Uses of this information and data should allow rich new interpretations on the way our world is built, used, and designed.

So can we  imagine the city at a different scale. Maybe it is possible to extend our imagination and enable that perception of the city as a dynamic, real time network. We can now put systems in place that can re–employ our perception and thus create new understanding of how this behaviour unfolds. There are patterns, they are connected and the systems that evolve, can be simulated and acted upon.

We can influence the process and the system and we can also create variables into this system that allows further understanding of the bi-products of the system, the data, and the resulting information.

Is it a  world full of data that can help understand the fundamentals of our outside environment, and monitor the micro codes of our dna to monitor disease?

Is it a world where we are liberated and empowered by data, where finally all of the technology becomes more than gimmick and starts to actually  work for us.

 

Surveillance State

February 6th, 2009

The proliferation of CCTV cameras and the growth of the DNA database were two examples of threats to privacy, the Lords constitution committee said.Those subject to unlawful surveillance should be compensated while the policy of DNA retention should be rethought. The government said CCTV and DNA were “essential crime fighting tools”.
“The huge rise in surveillance and data collection by the state and other organisations risks undermining the long-standing tradition of privacy and individual freedom which are vital for democracy,” Lord Goodlad added.
“If the public are to trust that information about them is not being improperly used, there should be much more openness about what data is collected, by whom and how it is used.” The government said CCTV and DNA were “essential crime fighting tools” but acknowledged personal data should only be used in criminal investigations where necessary.
“The key is to strike the right balance between privacy, protection and sharing of personal data,” a Home Office spokesman said.

“This provides law enforcement agencies with the tools to protect the public… while ensuring there are effective safeguards and a solid legal framework to protect civil liberties. Home Secretary Jacqui Smith has rejected claims of a surveillance society as “not for one moment” true and called for “common sense” guidelines on CCTV and DNA.

She recently announced a consultation on possible changes to the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act, under which public bodies can conduct covert surveillance and access data, to clarify who can use such powers and prevent “frivolous” investigations. The Conservatives said the government’s approach to personal privacy was “reckless”. “Ministers have sanctioned a massive increase in surveillance over the last decade, at great cost to the taxpayer, without properly assessing either its effectiveness or taking adequate steps to protect the privacy of perfectly innocent people,” said shadow justice secretary Dominic Grieve. Ref…http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk_politics

The image below show the artist Stanza’s DNA on the outside of a building made public for all too see.

Copyright Image by Stanza

Portsmouth invests money in mother of big brother….

December 11th, 2008
Copyright Image by Stanza

Copyright Image by Stanza. From Stars Of CCTV Series of artworks.

Our social  agenda and relationship to city space is being driven,  “re-designed”; re engineered without thought by local councillors and policemen who are creating a society of mistrust. Haven’t they got something better to  spend money on , ie schools, education, buses  etc etc These guys just don’t seem to know what to  spend the council tax money on  so they keep  buying  and investing in CCTV.

Anti-social behaviour has become a familiar sight in some towns and cities across the country.

Now there’s a new weapon in the fight against it called Smart CCTV. Portsmouth City Council is the first, and so far only, local authority in the UK to try out the new system. It’s a computer programme that has been integrated into the city’s existing network of 152 cameras and has been programmed to spot unusual behaviour in places and at times when it’s not expected. For example, a speeding car being driven around an empty car park could be a joy rider or someone running through a deserted shopping precinct late at night might be a vandal.

When those and similar scenarios are ‘spotted’ by the software, using special parameters from programmers, an alarm is sounded which alerts CCTV operators to that particular camera.

It’s already been used in parts of seven cities across America, in places like New York and Washington DC, where the feedback has been positive. Nick Hewitson helped design the version Portsmouth City Council is using.

He said: “It filters out all the rubbish video that you don’t want and lets you see the stuff that you do want. “So you’re using human beings for doing what they do well, making subjective decisions on incomplete data.

“And using computers to do what they do well, process tonnes and tonnes of boring data.”

But not everyone in Portsmouth is as convinced by the new system as Ray Stead and Nick Hewitson.

Samilia Narcho, 19, told Newsbeat: “They are lurking a bit too much into people’s business. It’s a bit unfair on people who aren’t doing anything wrong. “It’s a bit too much invasion of privacy. Big Brother going a bit too far.”

But 18-year-old Chris isn’t worried about being watched. He said: “It doesn’t really bother me because I’m not doing anything wrong, so I’ve got nothing to worry about.” Berry, who’s 24, and 21-year-old Becky Pearson have different opinions on the new CCTV system. Berry said: “I think it’s pretty good because there are a lot of idiots in Portsmouth and they need to be kept under wraps.”

Becky added: “I can see why people think it’s a bit too much, with people being too watched.” The Smart CCTV technology is on trial in Portsmouth but if it proves successful, other UK cities could set up similar systems.

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So after the councils lost your money which was “invested” offshore in icelandic banks…now  they are investing in developing new software  for CCTV cameras. Basically Portsmouth is investing your money in mother of big brother….and the best sort of reporting the BBC  can come up  with is from chris  “But 18-year-old Chris isn’t worried about being watched. He said: “It doesn’t really bother me because I’m not doing anything wrong, so I’ve got nothing to worry about.”……either read a little history  or read a little science fiction  because I think there is plenty here to worry about Chris.

So the question is what sort of society do we want to live in twenty years?

Yes good idea lets go for the one where we don’t trust anyone at all, and have to monitor  everyone, everywhere, all the time…..brilliant idea….I wish I had thought of that.  But then again if I had a software company or CCTV system  I  would send my sales team be straight down to the local council to sell these idiots these systems too.

CCTV the new planned unrest as a result of economic policy.

November 11th, 2008

Police camera action, CCTV makes quite good TV.

Attacking and confronting the systems. CCTV makes a good memorial a document of our social reality, our neglect.  All those images of last seen here from Jill Dando, to Damilola Taylor, my Stars Of  CCTV….these images forever recorded before the bullet hits or the police charge.

But what use is it to contain and kettle, to lock down the people. The city is the people its for the people.

We are living in a cyber city, it could become a cyber prison, so should we just get used to it, should we just open up the system. We should do  something otherwise when the fight starts our children will suffer.

In 1994 John Major said, “No sympathy for civil liberties groups whatsoever”.  Quote from conservative local conference. CCTV sees a function creep extending its uses and purpose over time. But can we trust the technology.  We have become a society of endemic surveillance.

In the next  few years we  will see the seeds sown for endemic surveillance. The new investment from the police and councils can only  be for the new planned unrest as a result of economic policy.

These systems will be in place to track and monitor those who have “issues” and they  will have been paid for by you.

The we have nothing top hide culture will soon find out what they have “invested” in as this technology becomes embedded in the networked city. Seeing out children fight, be unemployed and spied upon….this will be our fault.

stanza world is watching

Image: Stanza. "The world is watching" Live CCTV artworks from around the globe. 2004

The above images is a canvas artwork  from the generative real  time system called  “The  World is Watching. It uses  live CCTV feeds from 1200 cameras from around the globe.

A global panoptican…only it should be transparent and open.

The seeds we are sowing will not reap  healthy rewards. This investment is blind.

CCTV: ART HISTORIES.

July 1st, 2008

Video installation by Bruce Nauman.

Live Taped Video Corridor (1970)

http://bridell.com/tag/bruce-nauman/

In Live/Taped Video Corridor, you walk down a long, very narrow corridor. At the end of the corridor there are two monitors on top of each other. The lower one shows a video tape of the corridor, the upper one shows a live (CCTV) video of the corridor, shot from a camera at a height of about 3 meters, at the entrance of the corridor. The effect is that as you walk down the corridor, you see yourself from the back, and as you approach the monitor you get further away from the camera so you never really get any closer to “yourself”.

Corridor Installation (Nick Wilder Installation) 1971 consists of an inaccessible room and six corridors, three of which may be entered. Navigating these spaces we encounter a series of television monitors that relay our image taken by CCTV cameras. The positioning of the cameras is such that the information displayed on the monitors contradicts that of actual experience: we are left with a feeling of confusion and even isolation.

http://www.tate.org.uk/liverpool/exhibitions/nauman/guide/room4.shtm

To enter these works is to become a performer, yet at no time are we in control. Such are the spatial limitations that we can only make a limited number of responses, predetermined by the artist: ‘Whatever ways you could use it were so limited that people were bound to have more or less the same experiences I had.’ Viewed by some invisible authority, we become like rats in a cage, revealing generic patterns of human behaviour.

Vito Acconci, ‘Following Piece’ 1969

Vito Acconci, like Nauman, was also one of the first artists to really experiment with surveillance in his art. In Acconci’s ‘Following piece’1969, he took his surveillance to the streets and over the course of a month he closely filmed and documented the movements of anyone that happened to cross his path. Without the control and predictability of a gallery space, his films were documents of ‘real life’ as it occurred, and with them ranging from a few minutes to a few hours in length, it was an exaggerated exploration into the idea of ‘Big Brother is watching you’: it also analysed the intusion of personal space within a public area.

Julia Scher – ‘Security by Julia IX’ 1990. Julia Scher creates elaborate installations based around security and surveillance and invites the audience to become part of the work by playing the role of both the surveyor and the surveyed in her pieces ‘The Shurmann House’1991 and ‘Security by Julia IX’ 1990. By setting up cameras throughout the space, the viewers can look at themselves, watch others and wonder who could be looking at them in return.

Manu Luksch _ Faceless. ‘In a society under the reformed ‘Real-Time’ Calendar, without history nor future, everybody is faceless. A woman panics when she wakes up one day with a face. With the help of the Spectral Children she slowly finds out more about the lost power and history of the human face and begins the search for its future.

Chris Oakley

The Catalogue. ‘Placing the viewer into the position of a remote and dispassionate agency, observing humanity as a series of units whose value is defined by their spending capacity and future needs.’ http://www.chrisoakley.com/the_catalogue.html

Ann Stoddard makes interactive installations in which viewers are profiled via CCTV. These works explore how context can make viewers more aware of privacy and trust issues, less accepting of CCTV. At www.annstoddard.net, see: RANDOM SUBJECTS; Application Center, Waiting Room; Datapaint- Surveilling Utopia. My next show opens March 26th at the District of Columbia Art Center (DCAC), Washington DC. Please contact me at astoddard@net-site.com if you have questions, and to request images, a video-dvd, a press release, reviews. I hope to hear from you.

ctrl[space] : Rhetorics of Surveillance from Bentham to Big Brother. Edited by Thomas Y. Levin, Ursula Frohne and Peter Weibel (USAUK). The book was put together around an exhibition about surveillance organised from October 2001 to February 2002 at the ZKM, Centre for Art and Media in Karlsruhe (Germany). The art pieces are treated extremely well with plenty of photos and a text often written by the artists themselves.

Software to “hear” sounds.

June 25th, 2008

CCTV cameras which use artificial intelligence software are being developed to “hear” sounds like windows smashing, researchers have revealed.

University of Portsmouth scientists are working on adapting the software so it can also react to crowd noise.

Crimes would be captured on camera faster and response times improved.

The news comes after the BBC learned councils in southern England routinely used powers brought in to fight terrorism and crime to spy on people.

Figures obtained by BBC South showed the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act (Ripa) was used more than 750 times by the councils in 2007/08. The new three-year surveillance study is being funded by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC).

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/hampshire/7471140.stm

http://www.port.ac.uk/aboutus/newsandevents/frontpagenews/title,79126,en.html

The research team is now working on using the same software to ‘learn’ sounds and react to them by swinging the CCTV camera towards in them at the same speed a person would turn their head if they heard someone scream, which is about 300 milliseconds.

Dr David Brown, director of the Institute, said: “The visual-recognition software will be able to identify visual patterns but for the next stage we want to get the camera to pivot if it hears a certain type of sound. So, if in a car park someone smashes a window, the camera would turn to look at them and the camera operator would be alerted.

“The longer artificial intelligence is in the software the more it learns. Later versions will get cleverer as time goes on, perhaps eventually being able to identify specific words being said or violent sounds. We are only listening for specific words associated with violence, not full conversations.”

The software behind this research uses fuzzy logic to identify certain visual cues and sounds. Dr Brown said: “In identifying sound we are looking for the shapes of sound. In the same way, if you close your eyes, you can trace the shape of a physical object and ‘read’ its profile with your hand we are developing shapes of sound so the software recognises them.

“The software will use an artificial intelligence template for the waveform of sound shapes and if the shape isn’t an exact fit, use fuzzy logic to determine what the sound it. For example, different types of glass will all have slightly different waveforms of sound when they smash but they will have the same generic shape which can be read using fuzzy logic.

“It’s a very fast, real-time method of identifying sounds.”

Stanza questions systems and the ethics of The Control Space

December 8th, 2006

Stanza question systems and the  ethics of The Control Space

Up until recently this technology was mediocre at best. The concepts that fuelled this infrastructure seemed to lean to Orwell and the deployment of all CCTV has been paid for by and large using public money which could have been spent elsewhere (housing hospitals schools etc).

Stanza: Visitors To A Gallery. 2007. CCTV systems and ethics.

Stanza: Visitors To A Gallery. 2007. CCTV systems and ethics.

The question is, how are these new technologies being sold to government? Ie the hugely costly National Health database or ID cards schemes. In both cases new technologies sold largely untested. In so many cases new technologies are bought by ministers who don’t understand the technology.

How could they understand these implications of these technologies? They couldn’t understand that in the early days of CCTV most cameras would run out of tape and all of the rest would probably have such bad lenses that you couldn’t see anything anyway. However, it is their duty to understand the conceptual unpinning of the tech rather than how it works. And the conceptual underpinning seems to have been ignored, or if it hasn’t been ignored then this has gone on unchecked and un-monitored.

Rather like a bush fire, once one system had been put in place by one council; they all followed suite. None of them really checked to see how these systems actually worked or where evaluated. Plenty of people here have spent plenty of other peoples money fuelling a whole industry to watch us moving about just to spot a few criminals.) or has there always been a bigger picture , a master plan)

CCTV CCTV CCTV.  Stanza question systems and the  ethics of The Control Space

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Despite ten years of poor CCTV and stories of people getting attacked only to find CCTV systems not working, the powers that be, have stuck with this agenda and now the tech ( after huge development and investment) can read the time off your wristwatch. So know we have men sit in kiosks watching our movement through city space and software that can detect patterns on the flow, where you are going.

Now the technology has got interesting there are other considerations. The patterns we weave through our urban infrastructure can inform us about our urban and rural environment. But these systems should be used to watch people, we should trust our people. The premise of all this current deployment is mistrust. Ie these systems have been put in for the wrong reasons.

As much as people watch and vet criminal activity for employment in schools etc who is watching these people watching and monitoring these systems.

Certainly data bases of information are growing and expanding and in theory the public think there are hackers out there using sophisticated techniques to get access to data. By and large back doors are like all doors, most entry is done because the doors aren’t closed ie they are left open . The idea of thinking about back doors is to suggest that criminals are looking to leverage there way in ( although this my be the case ) it its too focused of the criminal misuse of collective data and not focused enough on what value the data give the collective.

 

There is far worse response it the collective abuse by the owners of these systems, this is what needs to be monitored Take the national DNA database which is owned by the forensic science department. Who owns this data, could it ever be sold. How else is the data being exploited? Who owns each individuals data, surely we each and all own the copyright to our own DNA. Why is the state taking our possessions, our DNA and re appropriating our data like another tax. Although they say they seek to protect us (ie the reason for collecting the data) how are they actually protecting my data? How do they seek to exploit ‘ property’ which is mine that has a value? Why do I feel abused?

More importantly in the systems data can be mined in ways that we cannot conceive. The development of new algorithms, data mining, and computer techniques can leverage and present new meaning from these systems in ways that we haven’t come close to guessing at. These new data sets can be exploited for corporate gain, even though the data belongs to the individual. This data can also be exploited to track patterns that we have spent the best part of the 20th C trying to avoid, ie totalitarian, iron curtains, Bent ham observation systems where everyone is spying on everyone.

For example lets get complicated and mix your tax records with patterns of spending from your credit cards, and your DNA type, mix this up with you mobile phone records and we can probably find for example any man of Irish decent who is married that might have bought a condom….or Muslim who travels regularly or….

The issue with most of this vulnerability of new technology is that most people who want to use it have no idea how to use it, or no idea that thing can always be used for others reasons. Example mobile phone for speech communication is now widely used as typewriter text editor for sending tested messages. This is just an example of a ubiquitous technology that goes to market and the people that brought it to market aren’t even aware what it might be used for. (I mean who would have guessed it)

Now with CCTV and chips and data mining of databases things are getting complex, without some ethical monitoring we will have no idea what is being sourced here and how its is being used and abused. Nor will we have any idea how this data is being shifted around, cross referenced and exploited by companies and governments never mind terrorists and criminals.

 

Stanza Art CCTV

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Maybe the world is indeed full of criminals but by and large we shouldn’t baton down the hatches Let the data be made public, open it up…..not just one gate keeper. Everyone whose data is on the system should have access. Lets try another approach lets trust one another.

I believe we should remove the passwords. What is the point of just trusting a select few people we don’t know we should trust everyone. It’s surely better to trust everyone than to mistrust everyone which is the road we have taken.

I am researching data within cities and how this can be represented, visualized and interpreted. Data from security tracking, traffic, and environmental monitoring can all be interpreted as a medium to make artworks. I investigate new ways of comparing, conceptualizing and then visualizing complex concepts related to the relationship of emergent data and real space in the built environment. In all my work I try to exploit the changing dynamics of city life as a source for creativity and create meaningful artistic metaphors. I utilize new technologies and integrate new media artworks into the public domain as part of this ongoing research into the visualization of city space. In essence I am researching data as a medium for creativity and how meaningful experiences of our cities may result. By investigating these data structures I aim to create new metaphors relevant to the experience of the city. The patterns we make, the visual and imaginative interpretations we give to real world events, are already being networked into retrievable data structures that can be re-imagined and source for information. These patterns disclose new ways of seeing the world. The value of gathering and re-presenting this data in artistic form, and then analyzing its impact and influence, lies in making meaning accessible to a wider audience.

I have a number of related artworks on my that you might find of interest….please go and have a look.

Here are four below.

Genomixer …….an open source DNA database….http://www.genomixer.com

Urban generation…… http://www.stanza.co.uk/urban_tapestry/index.html

Sensity artworks are made from the data that is collected across the urban and environment infrastructure. http://www.stanza.co.uk/sensity/index.html

Publicity. All the resulting data from a cctv network is projected over the building so that the outside of the building becomes a huge display network. http://www.stanza.co.uk/publicity/index.html

regards

Stanza