Invisible Agency.

This artwork represents the monitored landscape, the noise of the invisible virtual and connected space in which we are all enmeshed. This digital artwork monitors discreet data packages from all the Wifi Signals in range of the artwork to create a visual response inside the electronic artwork. The aesthetic experience facilitates a new understanding of the networked data space and the surrounding landscape of data, information, and stacked systems.

In other words everyone near the artwork or within a one mile range of the artwork is participating in the the artwork and the 'noise' of what you see. The data is poetically interpreted and formed into a responsive generative new media artwork It therefore by default becomes a public participatory artwork.

We are implicitly related to the data in the wider network within the environment by our own mobility. The liquid flows of the binary world can be evidenced from numerous fixed invisible devices that are now everywhere. WiFi signals acts to integrate the body into the wider technological landscape. The ‘body’ is invested inside the ‘data space’ by the multiple devices we carry and connect to these wider stacked networks. We are now complicit in this monitored relationship and by default we enter into a dialectic with all of these other devices via beacons and other monitoring systems. 

The artwork created raises several questions about the fluid liquid real time data space that now surrounds and envelops us everywhere. Who owns the data, who does this space belongs to? What is the future of this technologically stacked interlocking mediated environment?

Technical. Made with custom electronics. This screen based visualisation changes in response to the WiFi activity in range which is presented onto a flat surface of what looks like a map.

Size. 120 by 100 cm. Hangs on wall. Self contained. Mixed media. Oil, Canvas, Electronics, Cables, Leds, Screens, Software.

Context. How do we see all the flowing fluid information that is all around us?

Exhibition. Vertigo STARTS at Centquatre Paris. 2020

Available for touring and exhibitions. Best shown hung on the wall. However it can be laid flat on the floor.

Invisible Agency by Stanza

Steve Tanza

Art by Stanza

As temperatures rise in the electromagnetic system the strength of the transmission will be reduced. The refractive index of the atmosphere is highly dependent on of humidity and severely affects electromagnetic waves and the rate which they fade. WiFi in short will get worse not better. Space and time will collapse these signals. Accuracy falls, broadcasts overlap and noise will crowd out the signal

This work was with the support of the VERTIGO project as part of the STARTS program of the European Commission.

You don’t even have to connect to a network for it to see your MAC address; being nearby is enough. In order to find nearby Bluetooth devices and WiFi networks, your device is constantly sending out short radio signals called probe requests. Each probe request contains your device’s unique MAC address. If there is a WiFi hotspot in the area, it will hear the probe and send back its own “probe response,” addressed with your device’s MAC, with information about how you can connect to it. But other devices in the area can see and intercept the probe requests, too. This means that companies (anyone) can set up wireless “beacons” that silently listen for MAC addresses in their vicinity, then use that data to track the movement of specific devices over time. With enough beacons in enough places, you can also track movement around stores or around a city. This style of tracking can be thwarted with MAC address randomization. Instead of sharing its true, globally unique MAC address in probe requests, your device can make up a new, random, “spoofed” MAC address to broadcast each time. This makes it impossible for passive trackers to link one probe request to another, or to link them to a particular device.