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David Rokeby «Taken»
David Rokeby, «Taken», 2002
Photography | © David Rokeby

David Rokeby «Taken»David Rokeby «Taken»
Canada | interactive installation

 David Rokeby

«Taken» is a surveillance installation that provides two readings of the activities in the gallery space. A large gallery space has one wall taken up by two very large projections. On the left hand side, gallery visitors are extracted from the ground of the gallery floors and walls, and then looped back onto themselves at 20 second intervals. The result is that every action that has taken place in the gallery since the computer was turned on occurs together on the screen, repeating every 20 seconds. The image stream provides a kind of seething chaos of activity that can be read both as a statistical plot of gallery activities (where do most people stand to regard the piece? Do they move around?) and as a record of each act of each visitor. The image is densely social, deeply layered and chaotic. The right hand side is a cooler catalog of the gallery visitors. Individual visitors are tracked within the space. Their heads are zoomed in on, and adjectives are attributed to them (i.e. ‹unsuspecting›, ‹complicit›, ‹hungry›). These individual head shots are collected as a set of the last 200 visitors and presented as a matrix of 100 or occasionally all 200 shots, moving in slow motion. This side is analytical and highly ordered and rather threatening.
David Rokeby