It’s a common scene. You walk into an Apple Store and what do you see? Eight school kids who, instead of heading home, grabbed an iPad and started snapping photos. Oh, and their poses: the kissy face, the “thug” look, the middle finger, and the over-exaggerated smile. There’s something about Apple devices, and more specifically the Apple Store, that makes you want to snap a photo. What you may not have realized is that snapping one of those pics could make you a key part of an exhibit in an art gallery. That’s if your flick(s) was snapped at Apple stores visited by Irby Pace.
Unintended Consequences. That’s the name of the project. Pace, who is currently finishing up his photo MFA at the University of North Texas in Denton, collected a lot of images snapped on Apple devices in stores, emailed them to himself, compiled them, edited them down, and now has a series of portraits for his gallery exhibition. Where does the title come from? Pace says:[quote]Unintended Consequences explores changes in behavior for those people who have not considered how these images may be used.[/quote]
Although very creative, it’s not the first time we’ve heard of such a project. Last year, an art project entitled People Staring At Computers (down) by Kyle McDonald was a collection of pictures gathered through software that McDonald installed on Apple Store computers to detect faces and capture an image every minute. However, there was one thing McDonald wasn’t expecting at the time — the knock on his door by the FBI. Apparently, there’s something illegal in snapping photos of people against their will and blowing them up. Go figure. His laptop and storage devices were confiscated.
However, in Pace’s case, he didn’t do anything illegal, per se. After all, the people in his gallery took the photo themselves and left them. All he’s doing is blowing them up, right? Correct. Where the problem may come in is the reaction of those included in the gallery. Pace’s conscience is at peace though, telling Wired “the people [in the images] consciously left the images behind for anyone to see, or to take.”
But in his defense, the included portraits aren’t going to make the people any more significant. Or maybe that’s just me hating.[quote]“It would be interesting to know what their reaction would be to see themselves in a gallery and represented this way,” says Pace.[/quote]
Want to catch this exhibit? Unintended Consequences will be on show at the Cora Stafford Gallery, 1120 W. Oak St, Denton, TX 76201 from Feb 5th–10th. Let us know if you spot your face!