"Look at me, I'll be be the first person in the world to be sent by television!" - mike teavee Growing up, I loved Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory with Gene Wilder. To this day, the movie creates a sense of wonder in me and every time I watch it I want to be one of those kids who explores the great unknown world of Willy Wonka. (Don't get me started on the terrible Tim Burton version...) To me, Gene Wilder is the only Willy Wonka.
There is one moment in the movie that has stayed with me all my life, and probably in some way guided me into a career in the internet. The scene where Willy Wonka is transporting the chocolate bar across the room and all the bits are zooming above everyone's heads. That also kind of freaked me out. But it has made me think about how we share information today. We send information, now wirelessly, almost anywhere. I always think about these little particles of information constantly floating over my head in our wireless wi-fi world. We even store our data in some magical cloud now. (which also totally freaks me out)
We have iDevices that allow us to pay our parking meters, video chat with people on the other side of the planet, control our homes while NOT at home, and surveil our surroundings. We can look and interact anytime, anywhere.
My latest piece that I have been documenting on this blog is nearly complete. Today I finished all of the grout work on the tiles, and I just need to wait for it to cure before I embed the webcam. This piece is also about how we see, and how we watch and how we look. But, at the same time, it's about how we are looked at and how we are seen, even when we don't know it.
As we all know, i've been exploring the current marketing phenomena - QR codes - and how through our devices we are able to quickly get a marketing message. That seems weird to me; companies are doing very little work to get their messages to us. WE do all the work. It only takes a few seconds to make a QR code. It's a total marketing win - just put this little doohicky on things and people will scan it and hopefully buy something. The ROI on these must be astounding.
But, what happens when these codes look back at us like we are animals in this greater marketing zoo? What would the QR code see?
I've been giving much thought to how people see with their new iDevices and how we use them to interact with our environment and the gallery space. Like I mentioned above, my large ceramic QR code has a webcam built into it. This webcam will broadcast, via the internet, a feed of the people interacting (scanning) with the code. This information will be transported to another part of the gallery during the show - much like Mike Teavee - and put back together so everyone can see themselves as they are seen by this code.
AND, even if you are not able to see the show in person, you can watch from wherever you are via the wondrous powers of the internet. I've even been broadcasting the creation of the piece if you have been watching - and I know you have.
enjoy the show.