Red Dot


performance for mobile phone, video, audio

Red Dot is a multimedia performance that imagines a future in which large-scale collection of personal data is used to automate everyday decision-making. It is a world in which the project of collecting and analyzing personal data has been so successful that companies believe themselves able to predict optimal life choices for each of their subjects. The piece itself centers on a one-sided conversation between a faceless tech entity and one of these human subjects, with the fallible agency of the human at risk of being supplanted by algorithmic optimization.

The conversation is carried out through the interface of a mobile phone, with the live feed of the performer manipulated to contrast the physical human with a virtual self which is built on this gathered data. Beyond the purely visual processing, the phone is also explored as an instrument for audiovisual performance, particularly in the second half of the piece. Tied to the end of a long tether, the phone is swung about rapidly in a manner reminiscent of Gordon Monahan's Speaker Swinging, with the accelerometer generating synthesized howls in time with the movement.