DATA PORTRAITS, ROYALE PROJECTS CONTEMPORARY ART, CA
Opening Reception: March 27, 2015 | 5:00-8:00pm
Exhibition on view March 27 – April 26, 2015
(March, 2015) royale projects: contemporary art in Palm Desert, California presents a new body of work by Australian-born, New York-based artist, Kristin McIver opening with an artist reception Friday, March 27, 2015 from 5:00 to 8:00pm. McIver will exhibit her Data Portraits paintings, a central component of her new initiative, The Selfie Project. The works examine personal identity and its relationship to social media, in particular the form of autobiography that uses biometric surveillance (Facial Recognition Technology) on social media networks.
For McIver’s Data Portraits, she makes use of ‘Faceprint’ technology, a string of code used by social media computer algorithms to identify faces from online photographs. This form of surveillance can identify faces with 97% accuracy, comparable to the accuracy of human visual perception. McIver then translates an individual’s ‘Faceprint’ data – based on a pre-apportioned color pallete – into a vibrant abstract portrait, in a formalist aesthetic that leans toward geometric abstraction. Every individual participating on Facebook has a unique Faceprint data string, so McIver could potentially create a Data Portrait for any person, with different visual results each time.
By utilizing the string of Faceprint code, McIver uses the data in a number of artistic permutations ranging from sound works, large-scale murals, and botanical interpretations; or in the case of the royale projects exhibition, bright, pixel-like portraits on canvas. The series will include cultural influencers with rising profiles such as artists, musicians, writers, dancers and actors. These individuals have all experienced a certain level of fame, or ‘micro-celebrity,’ through their creative talents and strategic leveraging of social media.
These works explore and celebrate the relationship between new media and contemporary forms of celebrity. In this collection, McIver also appropriates both the color palette and scale of Andy Warhol’s 1964 Marilyn series for her paintings, referencing Andy Warhol’s deification of the celebrities of his day.
McIver addresses the selfie phenomena and social media’s manipulation of technology to map and mine identities through these vibrant and unique paintings. Her acrylic works simultaneously become a pop minimalist celebration of individuality, while also questioning the pervasive corporate surveillance that now plagues modern living. Her work emphasizes social media’s ubiquity, providing its participants access to generate their own mini versions of celebrity, there by realizing Andy Warhol’s “15 minutes of fame,” reinterpreted for the digital age as ‘everyone will be famous to 1500 followers.” The Data Portraits also highlight the ephemeral data collection and the dark underbelly of surveillance, enabled by advancing technologies as individuals share their information on social media platforms.