New Media Arts

Seeing I: The Lives of Hounslow

Company: Mark Farid
Running Time: Wed 1 September - Sun 10 October, daily 12.30 - 9pm
Price: FREE

This is a free event and open to all, so no ticket is required.

About this event

For 16 hours, Paul, Niina, and Q, each recorded one day of their life

Seeing I: The Lives of Hounslow, explores the real-life lives of people within the local community, and issues that matter to them. Wearing a custom developed pair of sunglasses fitted with covert miniature camera lenses and microphones capable of recording a full 360° field of view, from first person point-of-view, for 24-continuous-hours, every aspect of Paul, Niina, and Q’s life are captured; from brushing their teeth, to their bike rides, to their work, social life, and children, to their most intimate moments. Their everyday actions become transformed into an act of sharing; nothing is edited out. Any editing takes the form of self-censorship - and performance - as they determine which aspects of their lives they wish to share with the audience. In a world where every moment of our lives are documented and made public, how do they adapt to being watched?

Seeing I: The Lives of Hounslow is a part of a larger project, Seeing I: 7 days in VR, which sees artist Mark Farid wear a virtual reality headset, for 24-hours a day, for 7-days, experiencing life through the eyes and ears of one person; hearing only what they hear and seeing only what they see for one week. Inspired by Psychologist Philip Zimbardo’s Stanford Prison Experiment (1971), Philosopher Jean Baudrillard’s Simulacra and Simulation (1981), and Artist Josh Harris’ Quiet: We Live in Public (1999), Farid will be isolated in the exhibition space, unable to hear his own voice, or see his own hands for the duration of the project. With the only human ‘interaction’ that Farid will experience being the Other’s life - through the VR headset - how will this simulated cohabitation in the life of another displace Farid’s own sense of self?

Seeing I is commissioned by arebyte Gallery (UK), and the European Media Art Platform's (EU) with the support of the Creative Europe Culture Programme of the European Union (EU), the National Theatre Immersive Storytelling Studio, Body>Data>Space (UK), and the Sundance Institute (USA).

Seeing I: The Lives of Hounslow is commissioned by Watermans Arts Centre.

About the Artist:

Mark Farid is an artist, researcher, speaker, practitioner and cultural critic, specialising in the intersection of the virtual and physical world, and the effect new technologies have on the individual and their sense of self. Farid’s work embodies hacker ethics - such as privacy policies, use of surveillance technologies, campaigning for data privacy and protection- and the critique of social, legal, and political models.

Farid graduated from Kingston University, London, with a First Class (Hons) degree in Fine Art (2014), and has since given talks and participated in group and solo exhibitions in England, France, Germany, Spain, Denmark, Finland, Slovenia, UAE, and Japan. Farid gave a TEDx talk in 2017 about his first two projects “Data Shadow” (2015), and “Poisonous Antidote” (2016). Farid was selected to take part in the Sundance New Frontier program in Utah, USA (2016), for his on-going VR project, “Seeing I”. Farid had a solo exhibition at Ars Electronica Digital Arts Festival (2019), and was selected for the European Media Artist Residency Exchange, as part of the Creative Cultures Programme of the European Union (2020/21).

Farid regularly gives lectures at leading universities, including the University of Cambridge, Finland Academy of Arts, and Hochschule University Applied Science. His projects have been covered by media outlets worldwide. Farid frequently engages in art and technology conversations appearing on Fox News, Sky News, France24, BBC Radio 4, BBC 5Live, Times Radio, The Telegraph, The Guardian. Recently Farid featured as the contemporary “Surrealist Artist” on “Great British Railway Journeys” on BBC2 (May 2021).

This is a free event and open to all, so no ticket is required.


Click here to find full details for those with access requirements.

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