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Face to FaceBook

Face to Facebook is an installation piece created by Paolo Cirio as a third piece to his series, The Hacking Monopolism Trilogy. In this work he address the lack of privacy in the age of face book. Collecting 250,000 images from different account, they then run a facial recognition algorithm to categories their facial features. He then uploads these images on the a faux dating website, allowing people to see and connect with these people. Many viewers have mix reactions towards the piece many wondering how much data was scraped legally.

The things that happen on Facebook are really pretty meaningless. Not that they can’t have meaning, but simply that they don’t. Or, at least, they don’t until we get our collective hands on them. – D.E. WITTKOWER

Similarly, the creators of this piece mentioned that we put on a false persona on Facebook trying to portray the best side of ourselves.

The vast majority of pictures were both amateurish and somehow almost involuntarily or unconsciously alluring. And they are almost always “smiling”. – Paolo Cirio

On Facebook many present themselves base on Facebook primary function to connect and make friends. By placing these images on a dating website, Paolo Cirio, further emphasises on this shallow quality of making friends on Facebook. In the dating app, users use profile pictures to obtain the first impression of the partner before deciding to date them. These superficial qualities of attractiveness  are also used Facebook friends makings.So if the online persona is false, how can Facebook hold any meaning?

Personally, despite my inactiveness on social media, I still find myself censoring my thoughts when writing my post or comments. My online persona is vastly different from my RL self where I am more direct and crudely blunt. Facebook or Instagram don’t hold much meaning to me, as most of the post and photos are curated. however with the functions such as Instagram story, it allows people to capture that short moment of time, making it more genuine.


Ant Farm staged Cadillac Ranch Show in 1974 along U.S. Route 66 Texas. Ten different models of Cadillac cars were half-buried in a row, nose-first in the ground, at a sixty-degree angle corresponding to that of the Great Pyramid of Giza, in Egypt. Each car features one step in the evolution of the tail fin from 1949 to 1963 in a statement about innovation in a technological era, the American dream, and the absurdity of consumerism. 

Ant Farm — a collective of radical architects who were also video, performance, and installation artists but, above all, visionaries and cultural commentators — offers an intriguing look into the conceptual activity of the late sixties and seventies – Constance M. Lewallen

Ant farm was an avant-garde architecture, graphic arts, and environmental design practice, founded in San Francisco in 1968 by Chip Lord and Doug Michels. Having foundation in architecture, they aim to combine music, modern dance and architecture thus allowing them to create radical works work.

In the case of Cadillac Ranch, Ant Farm comments on the consumerism habits of Americans after the war. As stated in the interview, there was a automobile craze in the 50s as manufactures switch from producing war related consumer goods to consumer products. there was a craze of modifying and altering the cars. In fact USA was the largest exporter of automobiles. The planting of 10 Cadillac, a luxury car, itself is a bold statement of the mass consumption of goods. In addition, the site of this artwork further solidifies this notion. Stage on a plot of land owned by billionaire, Stanley Marsh, this shows how little the value of the cars meant to Marsh. Through such as ostentatious presentation, Cadillac farm was able to call attention of the passerby easily. Many stop and partake in the work by adding graffiti to it. In which Ant Farm regular adds a new coat of paint to cover up the graffiti.

Research critique on Grand Thief Avarta By Second Front

Second Front is a performance art group based in a online virtual world called Second life. The social construct of Second life is very similar to reality, you create goods and sell them. This performance art is the embodiment of the third space itself. The third space is a virtual space which integrates two different physical spaces.

“The third space is a fluid matrix of potentiality and realizable connections to the most far-reaching remoteness” – Randall Packer

The characteristic to create anything and everything is especially evident in the above performance. Second Front was able to leverage on the games unique ability to alter the characters appearance and gender to create a totally different persona. In addition to this, Second Font parodied the Hibernia Bank Robbery, by altering the mastermind appearance to look uncannily similar to Patrica Hearst. (refer to figure 1.)  I believe that this is a commentary on how Hearst was not acting with her own conscious but as a puppet to the mastermind of the terrorist group, SLA. This is supported bay reports showing that the SLA threatened Hearst with guns prior to the robbery. The throwing and distribution of the money to the mass may be referencing SLA demands for the Hearst family to donate 400 million worth of food to the needy. I refer back to Packer’s quote, Second Front fully utilized the third space ability to create anything. Staging the above performance, while retaining the different references  would be impossible in real life. In Second life, Second Front were unconstrained by the laws, money, time, common sense and of course the ability to cast, Patricia Hearst (or a look-a-like) to partake in their work.

Figure1: the uncanny similarity of the disguise with Patricia Hearst

However as a social commentary of Patricia Hearst involvement in the SLA, may not come across as effective if it was performed in reality. As it is created in a virtual game, the value of life will never be the equivalent to reality. We have been desensitized to character deaths after all they are immortal. The severity of the issue isn’t as greatly conveyed.

Overall I really enjoyed this piece and think that it was greatly able to unique characteristic of the third space by working directly in the third space itself.


Reading Summary: Open Source

Before I start rambling on the readings here is a video summarizing the concept of open source:

Like the name suggests. open source is a open platform facilatating the exchange,appropriation, collaboration, contribution, amplify, information and methodology among artist and even with the audience.

Unlike the traditional proprietary of artist creation, where its a one way conversion of the artist to the audience, (such as a painting exhibition) the peer to peer social interaction in open source has triggered for greater engagement between the artist and the audience, through a greater distribution. The facilitation of the exchange of information with people with the right skill sets allowed for better development of programs.

open source has also change copyrights. copyrights initially functioned as a form of incentive to encourage innovation. however with intellectual property rights, it has stifled developments, evident in the free software developed by a concerned  community exchanging and information along with their skills. open source has fostered the common consensus that copy right is not a single entity granted to a part, but multiple rights that the party license, allowing for changes and improvement.

Open source has greatly changed the way the interaction of the artist and the audiences. In the traditional setting of a museum, there is minimal interaction of the audience, and the artist. however, with open source, the audience now play an essential role in the artist artwork. Many performance pieces are solely dependent on the audience interaction. one example is Rhythm 0 by the Serbian artist Marina Abramovic. For a period of six hours, visitors were invited to use any of the 62 objects (ranging from harmless like a feather to a gun) on the table on the artist, who subjected herself to their treatment. where is test the reaction of the public to a the objectification of herself as compared to a human being. without the participation of the audience, the artwork would not been possible for Abramovic to execute herself, or uncover her aims.

in conclusion, open source has moved the work of a creator, from a individual to a collective social act. drawing influences, information from a diverse source.


In my opinion, open source has already become an intrinsic  part of our lives. This is evident through the avid use of google docs for note taking among students in lecture. Our number one source of information (as unreliable as it is); Wikipedia also acts as an open source, inviting the public to edit and update pages. Have a problem that you can’t solve? Ask google. In a nutshell the the Do-It-With-Others concept isn’t as alien as we think, after all it has been seamlessly incorporated into our lives.


What is sound?

Sound can include many things. some of which includes music kinetic sculpture instruments conceptual art sound effect and much more. Edgard Varese defines sound as all organize sounds. In a performance piece 443, he demonstrated that silence is also a sound. On the other hand, Paul DeMarinis argue that there are three parts to any sound recorded.The first sound is the sound that we try to record with a bit of distortion. The second sound refers to the sound of the environment. The third one refers to the whirring mechanics of the recording machine.

How has it been used in culture and society?

Sound art has been widely incorporated into the arts. by 1955 sound arts have almost become an art fad. It is widely adapted to music, kinetic sculptures, instruments played by the wind or the general public and more.  surface noise is often employed as the backdrop for continued attention and suspended belief. In the earlier times, the sound was used to create and emphasize on the silence.

What makes it an art?

Paul Dementist that that sound art has been loosely categories into the visual arts.  Similarly, as it lacks a purpose. I strongly believe that art has to have a purpose. Art is a reflection of reality. I feel that arts should offer a new perspective and probe the audience’s thoughts and feelings. Similarly, in traditional art, the meaning of the painting does not lie within the medium but on the subject matter of the work, unlike sound art where the medium of the meaning.

How does advancement in audio technology affect our sense?’

Advances in the audio technology allow us to normalise, compress and fill every moment with sounds. This results in us rejecting the silence, and the surface noise. This has resulted in many scholars opposing the classical and academical circles elevating silence to the highest pedestal in sound. This can be seen clearly in john cage 433, where he invited a musician to “play” a piano for 4 min and 33 seconds before leaving the stage. For John Cage, this is a composition of the varrying lenght of sielnce.