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<nettime> Invisible Airs Documentary
harwood on Mon, 5 Mar 2012 05:03:06 +0100 (CET)

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<nettime> Invisible Airs Documentary

Alistair Oldham an old film maker friend of mine has just just uploaded
the "Invisible Airs" documentary. This is Alistairâs particular take on
databases and the events that surrounded our work in Bristol. As
database's become active mediator's in their own right, actors
constructing, organising and modifying social relations and I'm often in
a position of addressing new publicâs, outside of specialist knowledge
and trying to explain the complex machinery that's behind the lived
logics of databases. Alistairâs film will be a key tool with which we
will try to generate discussion.  


Invisible Airs â Documentary by Alistair Oldham  "The computerized
database is fundamentally changing society. From communication, to
government, transport, shopping, friendship, health, education,
narrative and even the way we watch film, the database is radically
transforming our lives. And yet we are only barely aware of its
existence, we don't really know what a database is : like electricity,
it's pervasive and all around us , but we cannot actually see it.
Digital media artists YOHA set about making the database visible.
Working with Bristol City Council in England, they use local government
expenditure to explore the relationship between the database, power and
expenditure. Turning the pounds sterling of expenditure into the pounds
per square inch of pneumatic pressure, they make a suite of engineered
mechanical contraptions: an expenditure filled potato cannon, an Older
People Pneumatic Floor Polisher, an Expenditure Riding Machine and a
Open Data Book Stabber. But as they tour these contraptions around
Bristol, they become embroiled in the more fleshy realities of the city,
in the form of the Royal Wedding, local anti-Tesco riots and the
censorship of a local outdoor cinema.  Invisible Airs is very much a
story of our time, of our obsessions with data, ordering and sorting and
its uneasy relationship to the visceral bodies bound in cities." 

Alistair Oldham <Alistair.Oldham {AT} uwe.ac.uk>  

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