From September 22 to October 15, The Reference will present Data is the New Oil, an exhibition by Changan Son, Jun Ahn, *.lbu, Jinseung Jang, and Taisuke Koyama.
The exhibition focuses on ‘image-data’ as a future resource. Data generated and transmitted by digital networks has been both a resource and a flow to be controlled, and humans are using it as an opportunity for investment. In response to this contemporary situation, the exhibition presents works that deal with the generation and use of image–data in networks, images in the era of generative AI, and issues of data labor. Through this, the ecological impact of a network-based society and its future sustainability are explored.
Borrowing from the archival nature of photography, Changan Son uses screen shot technology to accumulate the time spent on the computer by printing it on glass. Jun Ahn uses images that have been repeated in art history, such as the Pieta and the Annunciation, and reinterprets human philosophical questions with generative AI in contemporary ways. *.lbu pays attention to the labor, environmental exploitation, and power behind AI technology, and in this exhibition, they also seek to plant ‘queer data’ in the network to disrupt the data ecosystem through guerrilla performance. Jinseung Jang creates an audiovisual performance that connects humans with mechanical devices, and Taisuke Koyama presents a photographic work that scans performers’ bodies in a computer-simulated 3D space and prints the data as screenshots.