In 2019, I was able to obtain a retired surveillance monitor from California Institution of the Arts. I repurposed this object into an installation with the help of Google’s Teachable Machine. Teachable Machine is a web-based machine learning tool. I trained the model with images where my camera is pointing at in two cases, 1)with and 2)without images of human body within the frame. I then trained the model to output images of Apple emoji in each case. As a result, when there is no human, the monitor shows face without mouth emoji. When the camera detects a person, it shows ‘shh’ emoji. The ‘shh’ emoji represents the sadistic voyeurism embedded in surveillance technology. I installed the monitor in a theatrical setting with found objects. The photo slides that are projected onto the wall are pieces of private memory of someone I do not know that I obtained from Santa Clarita Flea.
CalArts does not have any surveillance camera at the moment.