Equivalences [the Kate and Saddam sequence] (2007)
Equivalences [the Kate and Saddam sequence] is part of an extended video installation also called Equivalences. The statement below was written to speak to the concerns of the series.
Since it has existed, the net has displayed a dialectic of potlatch and recuperation, followed by detournement. Intelligence and generosity are exploited for fantastic profits, but the exploiters can be hijacked as well. My work intersects the current phase of exploitation of user-supplied content on Youtube.com, etc., where 15 nano-seconds of fame are exchanged for consigning the aura of individual subjectivity to the ads framing it; in becoming part of a network of interchangeable, equivalent elements, selfhood is sold as commodity. In a necessary irony, my work functions by translating the offerings of Youtube to other contexts, repurposing them as commentary upon that context. Since this violates the principle of “host” ownership, they may not be, nor do I necessarily wish them to return directly to the scene of the crime. In place of one-way broadcast communication, the “new” spectacle offers inter-passivity, pseudo-agency. Creating resistance requires bringing forward the background. “Pay no attention to the little man behind the curtain,” indeed; pay attention to the curtain.