yes, it scans. / by Jeff Herrity Artist

Herrity_Jeffery_Target Audience - Audience Segmentation_49x49_ceramic tile and web cam So, last week I installed my Senior Thesis Preview Show in Gallery 31 along with several other classmates. All the stress leading up to this show instantly melted away once my piece was successfully hung on the wall. I was a bit worried that the weight of it would send the whole piece crashing to the floor and I would have to quickly re-write my artist statement to include how this was planned. Ok, not really, I wouldn't be able to bullshit my way through a catastrophe such as that. I think in total, the piece weighs in at a little over 100 pounds.

One thing DID change once the piece was hung, my beloved Dropcam got fuzzy. This isn't because the quality of the camera isn't good - it is fantastic - but many things started to work against me as I got closer to finishing. I had to embed the camera into the middle of the structure behind one of the black tiles which caused the signal strength to drop significantly. This isn't a flaw in the camera. The Corcoran is also notorious for bad internet signals, and so the wi-fi up in the senior studios is also working extra hard. Never once have I had the signal drop.

screenshots of people interacting with the work

Once the piece was hung on the walls, the camera is really sandwiched between tiles, plywood, 2x4s, drywall and more plywood. Across the gallery, directly in front of the QR code is the monitor that displays the live internet feed. One feature of the Dropcam(have I mentioned how great this device is??) is that I get a notification on my iPhone and email any time there is movement around the piece. I wasn't sure how I would use this when I was planning the work, but then found that I like a record of the people interacting with my work. There have even been a couple times when friends have been looking at the camera and playing around and I take a screenshot of them and text message it to them. It goes from fun to creepy in about a millisecond. BUT, that is what the piece is all about, interacting with me and interacting with the work.

My critique for the piece went well and there were many questions raised that I had also been considering. In my head and my plans everything went perfectly, but it wasn't until the piece was hung in the configuration that I wanted that some new ideas arose. This piece has become more about how we live today under constant surveillance. Sure, my original idea about how we interact with objects and gallery spaces holds true, but the broader question is how we are constantly watched EVERYWHERE has come into play. My THESIS piece may change a bit...

We have our celebration reception this Thursday December 1, 2011 from 6-8 pm. hope you can make it, and if not, sit down at your computer and go to: to watch.