Installation: The White Room
The Tactical Technology Collective’s installation manifests as the ideal corporate shopping experience; fully equipped with data experts, product lines and a hands- on training facility. ‘Valued customers’ can play with our everyday devices and gain a better understanding of the digital shadows they cast. Through sleek interfaces and user friendly systems, visitors will see how individual identities are mediated by the state and through corporations. The White Room shows participants how data is aggregated by their activities in existing technological environments and acts as a guide for the broader scope of the ‘self' within these environments. Through this interactive experience, visitors will acquire the knowledge to make more informed choices online based on the current state of internet freedom, privacy, and surveillance.
The range of artworks, investigations, products, and advocacy projects presented in the space emphasize the importance of digital autonomy, its political implications, and are arranged into four thematic sections: The Bar; Something to Hide; Big Mama; and Normal is Boring.
The Ingenious Bar presents object to clearly illustrate the inner workings of a quantified society. The objects displayed at the Bar demonstrate the practicalities of material and immaterial realities of quantification - for example, how does mobility around our cities, streets and institutions look when digitalized? And how is that information used?
On Saturdays, Sundays and Mondays, The Bar is staffed by workers who lead visitors through the devices and interfaces we interact with on a daily basis. Workshops, demos and consultations are lead by staff workers that help visitors understand how the data on these devices is collected, traced, and who has ownership over that data. The Bar staff also offer tours of our “App Center”, a compilation of applications that offer safer and better control of personal data. Ultimately, the White Room is a space for reflection, experimentation and play.
Visit the App Centre here: https://myshadow.org/resources
Something to Hide is a response to the “Nothing to hide” ideology and campaign. How does the self operate in a quantified society? A series of critical interventions by creative practitioners and artists present alternative ways to interact and feed our devices. On display are metronomes for your activity tracker ('Unfit Bits’) as well as a toy panda stuffed with shredded Snowden documents.
Big Mama is a comprehensive look into the modern state's reinvention of itself as the e-government or digital agency. Objects here demonstrate institutionalized methods of data observation, tracking, pattern recognition and its adaptation to governmental operations from national identification to refugee aid. Dressed up as care, Big Mama takes these precautions because "it's for your own good”.
Normal is Boring re-creates the internet landscape as a miniature world for a top- down view. Represented here are the tech oligarchs developing fertility chips for women in previously colonized countries and the Google Empire - "One Account, All of Google”. On the surface, it is California-meets-cybernetics; underneath, it is big business. Startups aren't the product of hobbyists and technology enthusiasts, but rather designs of marketing departments, Washington D.C. lobbyists, and Wall Street analysts. Branded as disruptive 'Un-Companies', these entities are more precisely major stake holders of power, influence, and wealth.
Watch curator overviews on The White Room objects: