Created by French artist Nicolas Maigret and American software developer Brendan Howell, The Pirate Cinema looks and sounds like something has gone terribly wrong. An installation of free-wheeling glitches and staccato bursts of pop songs and clipped dialogue are rendered in real-time on three screens simultaneously. An automated system downloads the most viewed torrents worldwide and the data of the fragmented media is projected onto the screens. The installation was featured at Liverpool's Abandon Normal Devices Festival in October. Maigret makes immersive works that delve into the fragmented nature and geography found in the wilds of the internet.
Glitch art is best when produced as commentary on the electronic age, rather than the ubiquitous use today of mere aesthetic, and Maigret's display of emergent patterns in non-random selection of random data is an interesting example. With today's neverending revelations of NSA and GCHQ mass-surveillance and data-hoovering, this piece sparks interesting thoughts outside of the obvious topic of piracy.
Here's another example of great glitch video art, the music video for Liars track Brats, created by the fantastic Ian Cheng:
"When data visualisation goes wrong": If you're charmed by digital mishaps, try the Accidental Art Tumblr.
Art & Design
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