C-Prints, appr. 70 x 93 cm / HD video, runtime 63:07 min
For 19 years now I have been following the traces of public webcams: cameras installed in public or private spheres that automatically record images and spread them via internet. I research where they are located, travel there, and get myself photographed. New York and Moscow, London, Las Vegas and Singapore – I went to more than 800 webcams in 22 countries. So far.
On location, I place myself in front of the camera. As »The Traveller«, I stare back. Same clothes, same pose, every time. You can recognize me in every image. You can watch me.
A lot of questions arise. Who sets up these automated cameras, and why? What do they show? Are people aware of them? Who needs these images? Who looks at them? Does the presence of a camera alter a site? What constitutes a photographic image in terms of content, authorship or quality?
The Traveller examines global spread of imagery between irrelevance, amusement, information and surveillance, and the aesthetics involved.
Among many other places, The Traveller encountered the legendary coffee machine where the world’s first webcam was pointed at, the ESA European Space Agency main control room, a huge cactus observed by four cameras, numerous street corners and backyards, and the inside of a New York police station – arrested for strange behavior.
The Traveller is a collaborative project with Bernhard Reuss.