Watch/Engage With: UNINVITED


Get ready to really not like something… Or really like something, depending on what happened to you as a child, I guess.

Last month, London’s Furtherfield Gallery launched a show called UNINVITED that’s centred around ‘the world’s first horror experience by and for machines.’ Right off the bat: yuck. But wait, there’s more. UNINVITED is a project by fine artist-come-software designer Nye Thompson and UBERMORGEN that seeks to seduce, reject and ultimately disturb the human viewer.

According to Nye, UNINVITED is ‘the unforeseen outcome of a massive botnet (probably Mirai aka Future). Millions of devices and systems around the world became virally infected by the botnet—the vast majority of them surveillance cameras—and out of this sick hallucinating critical mass something new emerged: a new distributed network organism with camera eyes everywhere, desperately striving to understand itself and its environment and to protect itself. This organism has a centralised cloudBrain (what) where key processing of the data received from its sensors takes place. It also has mechatronic avatars which perform part of these processing activities. One of these avatars—or ‘Monsters’ as we call them—is active inside Furtherfield Gallery. The UNINVITED organism’s boundaries are fuzzy and constantly changing and it also has an organic component, we as humans are profoundly entangled within it. And we as artists felt ourselves to be operating very much as nodes within the UNINVITED network.’ Huh?

Here’s an illustration Nye uses to help explain her work to dummies like me and you.

Get it? Me neither. A machine uses CCTV cameras to observe the world remotely and transform what it learns into a horror film for other machines to watch… I think. Anyway, just punch three cones and check UNINVITED out.

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