autonomy (im)possible in the shadow of radical-openness?

A few months ago I applied to attend the radical-openess 2014 event.

The application was rejected and that gave rise to what seems like an interesting opportunity to Do the stuff suggested on the application in a different way – a manner which might be perceived as being in the shadow of the event taking place until 31/05/14..

A shorty of W+HTF?
The initial idea (see details far bellow) imagined doing a workshop-kind-of-thing where:
* people will spread/walk/etc around town.
* gather “shadow-spots”, ie some sort of data/recordings of stuff that is in shadows, un/less-seen/notice-able.
* upload & share the shadow-spots via the narcissus search engine. A search engine that is biased towards elements a community might place in its shadows..

Current idea:
Instead of having to Be in one single geo environment, perhaps people could do Shadow Spotting where they are at and when the inspiration comes?

Because I happened to fancy doing this activity + am heavily involved already with the Narcissus Search engine, am suggesting that if during the 30/31.05.14:
* people want to write, jot, draw, take pics, make code, record sounds, take times, links, plant, spit, yell, laugh, kiss, dress-up, de-code, spin-wheels, surf, etc. Etc. ETc ++ linking to shadow spots spotting. Elements you might notice that are in shadow of others, or that are just less notice-able, or perhaps just happened in the shadow of time, of movement, etc..
The “shadow” is a personal definition, and in itself, these definitions might become shadows of one another on the search engine..
(Shadow-Spotting can be done at any time of the day/night while going around doing whatever a person might do in town..)

* I’d be happy to chat about these activities via skype/phone/email and perhaps assist in uploading to the narcissus site, make your own narcissus search site, link-up stuff that searches from shadow spotting, etc..

Since am attempting to share rather than communicate – any clarification questions are Uber-Welcome..

Cheers and much pun-free fun!

btw: i asked if they are fine with me doing this in their shadow. was told its cool! 🙂

The idea as was shared with the radical-openness people:

description of your intention:
The 1st line of the 2014 call is, for me, very evocative:
“Uncovering new truths and making them public as a disruption and
criticism of the dominant system has consequences.”

Artistically, uncovering truths and new ways its possible to do
stuff, worked very well with the dominant artworld system. In a
sense, it can be argued that like urban gentrification, radical
art practices tend to offer new territories for the art market to
capitalise on.. To own.

Hence, the proposal is, in a sense, an attempt to question the
very process of Uncovering. How do we uncover hidden, less seen –
or un seen – missed and possibly unpopular stuff, yet retain the
radicality.. (or not selling out..)

Sometime ago, Phil Jones and I made a search engine that at its
core has an algorithm made specifically for uncovering
shadow/dark data. The algorithm goes
through a cycle of “popularity” or “being seen and used” for each
bit result, and hides popular result for increasingly longer
periods – hence bringing forward the data that Was in the shadow
of the more popular one.
However, and crucially, once the formerly shadow data becomes
used, seen, and by its nature gains some popularity, it too gets
hidden, and formerly popular stuff, and even less popular and
more shadowy information, gets the chance to be more visible..
Its an ongoing cycle.

For radical openness, I would like to present and make use of the
algorithm via a workshop process that explores the shadowy and
unseen in an urban environment. Therefore, workshop participants
will get involved in uncovering dark/unseen/shadowy urban
spots/places. Then sharing the uncovered places with workshop
participants, and via the narcissus algorithm, experience how the
dark urban places get to see various shades of
Hence exploring the process of uncovering as well as questioning
how its done and how it might operate.

To do the ideas above:
* I will introduce the narcissus algorithm, and the concept of
dark/shadowy/unseen elements/places/spots in urban environments.

(This will include examples as: homeless, bus stops, traffic
signs, spaces behind phone exchange boxes and walls, etc..)

* At the end of the introduction, we will all go out in search of
shadow spots.Each workshop member will find their own or, if they
fancied, people could also be grouped. These spots will be
recorded as participants might wish. (eg take a photo, write a
description, video clip, log the longitude/latitude location,
record sounds, etc.

* Following the gathering of data/information about shadowy dark
urban places, we will share the findings through feeding them to
the narcissus search engine. ie First we will put the data into
the narcissus database, and then people will present their
findings and talk about why the thought their findings were

* After the presentations, we will wrap things by looking at the
narcissus search results and how they affect visibility – or
otherwise – of the data people just put..

what participants should bring:
Participants will probably need some sort of data recording
tool.. This could be:
* a pen and paper. (which I will probably be able to provide..)
* a camera.
* a mobile device.
* a sound recorder.
* anything else that might be relevant..

An open mind and possibly an affinity or a desire to question the
subject of uncovering process..

Level of Workshop:
project websites:
where you can get the information about the search engine and
links to show how it operates.
Also: is an explanation of
an earlier iteration, the workshop for radical openness is based
Image ( Snapshot of the work), Files :
Software &/or Hardware: I will probably need a projector and an
internet connection.. (I will bring some usb sticks and a sizable
external hard drive for people to put the data, and from which to
upload into the narcissus search website.. Also, I can provide a
camera for people who might have decided to jot or draw something
on paper..)

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