‘No body to our friendship’

 

Sound installation, two speakers on tripods, 2018

A conversation between Siri and Google translate using the most search questions in each engine. A dialogue between these two female voice generators, the start of their friendship, what difficulties and connotations they might face.   “Siri is verbally not as ‘out there’ as Google Translate who will say anything that comes to mind, anything that you can type literally. With Siri it takes a while and some persistence before she tells you anything about herself, and even then, she keeps bringing the conversation back to you. “This is about you, not me” she says a lot, just like “I aim to please” and “I’m sorry”. She really puts her friends before herself.” 

Listen to the conversation at: https://soundcloud.com/puck-vonk/sets

 

This piece was first shown at the 6th Moscow International Biennale for Young Art 2018. As part of the Strategic Project ‘This Site is Under Revolution’ curated by Barbara Cueto which took place at MMOMA Moscow Museum of Modern Art.

Puck Vonk explores the voice as a critical object embedded in the post-digital society, whereby feminism becomes an active gesture to debunk preconceptions about behaviors in digital terms. Despite of her young age, she achieves to generate a nuanced depiction about the way interactions shape both our identities and relations. By these means, she achieves to make us aware of the disparities in representation, the implicit forms of control over the body (and the voice), and the repercussions of the usage of female voices in the allegedly neutral digital sphere. The sound installation continues in the shape of a notation present in the room, like unveiling the script behind the scenes. In this way, she puts to the fore issues regarding digital empathy and computational knowledge by virtue of swipes, scrolls and other body language – digital movements with physical flow.” – Barbara Cueto, curator This Site is Under Revolution. 

Barbara Cueto invited the artists featured in this show to reflect on the forms of digital dominance and violence, contemporary systems of control and coercion as well as ways of resisting them. Symbolically, the project takes place in the mansion at Gogolevsky Boulevard famous for secret meetings of the Decembrists, while its virtual continuation is hosted by Cosmos Carl on the website cosmoscarl.co.uk, exhibiting the work from artists and activists whose projects are representations of contemporary digital resistance.