Sound Selfie – Encrypt Your Identitiy in Sound
Stationed at the Technology & Protest Conference at the Technical University (2014), Berlin & again at West Space gallery in Melbourne (2015) – I provided participants with the opportunity to make their personal Sound Selfie. Looking into the camera on my laptop, facial recognition algorithms detected and analysed conference / gallery attendees’ faces, and the individual facial data generated sound. Exploring modes of participatory surveillance as well as making a parallel action to the usual chain of events for the Selfie, the Sound Selfies were instantly uploaded and archived to a Facebook page.
Investigating how the surveillance of identity can lead to a biological reductionism, I programmed a basic form of digital synthesis (FM synthesis) to emphasise the reductive process of digitally encoding the face into a few basic measurements. By taking measurements at regular intervals and storing them as numbers, digital (binary) encodes by marking thresholds of absolute distinction. The gap between two thresholds is a range of quality, but digitisation imposes a uniform value on this range thereby erasing difference. Digital excludes excess, singularity and uniqueness in favour of static fixed forms. I’m interested in what this means when our identities, choices, and personalities are transformed into streams of data under the algorithmic gaze.