Surveillance Statement

If anything, this statement seems almost too legitimate (though of course still ridiculous). I wonder if it’s assumed to be an actual artist’s piece, potentially from a Washington University student. (I mean, those are some weird looking cameras.) It’s located near the school in the U City Loop in St. Louis. The illusion of legitimacy might keep this statement up longer than it might otherwise.

About a month after this Art was declared there was a mugging near this camera. A friend who worked at a nearby store told me there was a debate as to whether or not the camera was real (and might’ve captured the assault) or if it was an art installation.

 

Surveillance Statement.
This piece parodies our current state of surveillance in the ‘first world.’ Taking the idea of ‘Big Brother’ to an overt extreme, these camera’s main strategy is to remind the pedestrian that he or she is being watched by an ‘eye’ that is anything but unseen.
Placed purposefully behind an intimidating black barrier complete with spikes, these cameras peer upon the ‘public’ while nestled in the private. On University property, this equipment begs the question of who is watching whom? The voyeur, stereotypically portrayed as the quintessential ‘male gaze,’ here is more reminiscent of a protective matriarch (Big Mother?), a monolithic beacon promising security it can scarcely provide. Where do these recordings go? Is anything being ‘taped’ at all? It is a mystery whose answer doesn’t matter in the least. Regardless, readers of this statement are encouraged to face these faceless oculars, confront them and demand response. No answer?