Security surveillance cameras are increasingly widespread, both in public and private spaces. Affordable, accessible and purchasable by anyone, they capture millions of hours of raw footage every day. Their applications now extend far beyond securing high-value sites or small businesses; they reach comfortably into the domestic sphere, integrated into our suburban streets, our backyards, our doorbells. They work as a deterrent, watching without being watched, and yet, they have long been the valuable target for hacking. The project consists 31 images taken by CCTV cameras all over the world that are unprotected and can be accessed by anybody on internet. From America, Italy, the UK, to China, South Korea and Thailand, these cameras offer “accidental sights” – glimpses into the lives of strangers. In this project, I use them as the extension of my own camera. The images are taken and selected to represent the breadth of modern life across the globe. The contents include landscape, architecture, and animal, machine and human activity. In a world where sensors track so much of our lives, questions like “Do we get to escape from the gaze?” or “Do we have the right to be forgotten?” have become urgent.
The combination of the elements creates a dystopian use of the utopian postcard, a “familiar strange” and a trigger for the viewer to think more deeply about the aforementioned questions. A parallel dimension to the real world has been created through technology that empowers people with a world of information if they have the means to exploit it. Technology has a profound effect on the way human beings experience the world, even on the way we think. We should look at these devices more carefully, just as they are constantly looking at us.