Desert Scan Ourzazate Version 2, 2014
Desert Scan Ourzazate Version 2, 2014

Desert Scan Ourzazate Version 2, 2014


See also:
Version 1

Desert Scan:
A Near-Future Magnetic Resonance Imaging Conspiracy
Data + 5 delirious commentaries

three-channel video projection w/sound; installation set; text


Flashed scraps of land loop triggering regional activity. Fields incite bursts of radio waves re-organizing protons, sparking haemodynamic response for voxel by voxel coding. Drawing on operational neuroscience for military use, Google satellite images of desert terrain at Ourzazate are relayed at 50 images per second to a subject in an fMRI brain scanner, bypassing perception through a direct address to the brain. The subject responds through neural patterning indicating ‘interest’ in certain images.

In the year 2020, six institutions bombard the scanner-subject with material and extract data: A film production consultant is experimenting with the removal of interest from images in order to propose a radically inhuman set; an artist layers interest to excess in a drive to maximal intensity; a philosopher, commissioned to speak at Frieze Art Fair, is writing a text for a panel on digital neo-literalism; a Google Creative Lab intern drafts copyright laws and explores quicker ways of harvesting data; while a DARPA (US Defence Advanced Research Projects Agency) researcher aims to control accelerated timeframes of neural pattern recognition. Finally, the shadowy curator of a new institution experiments with gallery display as a reflexive interface, diseased machine for feeding on and spitting out your stupid desires.

You, the viewer of the work in its gallery installation (set in this future institution) are bounced between the screens of these research platforms (from inside the fMRI scan to Final Cut Pro to film agency presentation and so on...) immersed and sidelined with no time to reflect, your frustrations and desires plugged into near-future conspiracies for Freedom, Truth and the Real, alongside the continued insistence of the scan.