The point of this work is to explore what facial recognition technologies are and how they may affect our behaviour with regards to public gathering and protest.
I have worked with six people who participated in public protest. A few are long-time protesters with a list longer than my arm of where and when they have stood up to be counted. Others are newbies, propelled by our climate emergency to skive school and demand that this urgency be met with a response to change societal ways.
Making the actual placards was really fun, mostly because there was a lot of glue involved and that is one of the top sensory things to do. Also, it was totally new to me. I hadn’t worked in this way and it was exciting to see how the kozo paper (about 20grams in weight) reacted with the PVA glue. I wanted to see how translucent it would go and how far it could be manipulated without disintegrating.
The final objects are rather beautiful with their air bubbles and encased paper, and the layers of translucent screen prints creating a new image – a liminal portrait. One where the identity is, and is not, the person. One that challenges identification. One that encapsulates movement, action and an assertive ‘sitter’.
Early this morning we had the first photoshoot with the photographer Rob Darch and the first protester-participant (an interesting oxymoron). More on this in another blog post.