A Sound Novella: Surveillance
2018, Integrative Studio and Seminar II
Video and Sound
A Sound Novella: Surveillance is a sound and video installation, of which the primary focus is on sound. The visual aspects of the video function as a support for the sound. The inspiration for this piece is taken from the dystopian novel The Circle by Dave Eggers in which the author discusses evolving issues of surveillance and transparency generated by current technology and the internet. A sound novella is a creative adaption of the book; the purpose is to introduce the audience to an alternative experience of an existing work. However, different from other sound novellas, this installation has a personal touch. While working on the related research paper, I came across essays with quotes and ideas, which inspired new approaches to my studio project. It features dialogs, sounds and music from The Circle’s movie adaptation, extracts from Michel Foucault’s writing on Panopticism, quotes from Jonathan Shaw’s essay on surveillance in the present world as well as advertisements from newest technologies (such as phones by Apple, Samsung and Huawei).
The Sound Novella is divided into seven chapters since the number 7 signifies completeness, it presents a reference to the novel The Circle. Each chapter is divided by an intermission with a sound effect as if a disk changes track. The title of each chapter is listed as following in order: The Panopticon, The Watchers, Drone, SeeChange, Private Eyes, Mercer: Death Threats, Reflection. Each audio track is either accompanied by a visual or darkness. The first chapter features an image of the Panopticon while the second shows quotes with a 1 and 0s filled black-green-red background. The SeeChange track plays simultaneously with a colored moving grid, representing cameras and screens while concurrently the sixth audio track presents a moving drawing of someone filming with an iPhone. The last chapter ends with a combination of smart phones advertisements. Private Eyes and Drone does not feature a visual. The video can be accessed with the QR code on the back of this Bridge Book.
A Video Documentation: