Error View

From XPUB & Lens-Based wiki

Error View is a single-channel video work that explores the digitalization of our world. The work is composed of a series of photographs of interior rooms, where digital landscapes of glitched images replace outdoor scenery, visible through each rooms’ windows. The video presents five rooms in a series, with each room and digital landscape suggesting its own mood through sound and colour. Glitched audio accompanies each room, further suggesting ‘mood’ music corrupted into near-cacophony. The video work forces the viewer into a completely digitized world, where the boundary between the digital and non-digital is reduced to the self. Traditional points of reference found in nature are reduced to the inner boundary of our homes, with all else given up to the digital.

Photographs of interior spaces were taken in Halifax, New York and Rotterdam. These spaces tend toward the personal and private; I chose these spaces as they remained under the creative control of their inhabitant(s). In a second phase, photographs of outdoor sceneries (flowers, trees, lakes, landscapes) were run through an online glitch tool that corrupts some bytes in each image. Because of the way JPEG encoding works, the corrupted file still shows a corrupted image. These corrupted images were turned into looping videos by scrambling the bytes of the images between the SOS (Start of Scan) and EOI (End of Image) byte markers, then loading it back into the browser. Photographs of the interior spaces were then photoshopped to remove pictured windows, and overlaid on each video glitch to create the effect of a ‘glitching’ exterior view. The work is further accompanied by glitched audio created in Ableton that abstracts the original audio into atonal frequencies that mirror the rhythm of the glitched videos.

Error View examines the digitalization of our world, and its aesthetic consequences on our perception of it. The work began with my interest in the emergence of digital aesthetics and their ubiquity in popular culture. These include obvious photoshops, pixelated images, glitches, and memes. I began with the glitched image as the archetypal digital image, having only entered into popular conscience with the digital explosion and having its conspicuous visual qualities based exclusively on the behavior of digital formats. The windows found within each still image, of course, represent the windows of our perception; the eyes through which we see the world. Error View takes the digitalization of aesthetics to an extreme, replacing traditional sceneries and landscapes with the absolutely digital. Ultimately, the work images a universe where the digital realm is no longer contained within a screen but permeates all reality.