(thesis advisor)Anna Harsanyi
May 3 2020
Nowadays human generated data is an economic resource, a playground for quantitative social network analysis, classification and algorithmic profiling. Individuals today are no longer defined only by their declaration of self-identification – they are also a representation of their data, interpreted and transformed into proprietary bodies of ‘measurable types’ which have their own histories, rationales, and politics, detached from individual, social contexts. ‘Who Are I’ is an installation that transforms the artist’s personal user classifications, as defined by Google’s Ads Personalization, into a generative self-portrait that prompts reflection on the genesis of algorithmic identities in today’s networked societies. In a large-scale installation, the artist presents fragmented portraits of individuals that have never existed – faces generated through artificial neural networks – that form disembodied visual metaphors for networked systems of identity formation applied to all aspects of digital life. Each portrait fragment represents a single vector within a complex, multi-dimensional, identity determining latent space. A recognizable portrait is only visible when viewing the accumulation of all pieces: it is all of them at once and yet none of them. Always somewhere in the space in-between, stuck in dimensions that cannot be comprehended and upon which there is no influence or control, the figures depicted perpetually shift in a constant, mutative flow of data.
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