The FotoFocus day-long symposium, AutoUpdate: Photography in the Electronic Age held at The Carnegie in Northern Kentucky on Saturday, October 5, will feature lectures and panel discussions from international artists, curators, journalists, and educators. The symposium invites speakers to review photography’s part in the current global crisis of information exchange; the fate of documentary filmmaking in a “post-truth” age; and offers a historical and philosophical assessment of digital imaging, past and future.
Preeminent artist Trevor Paglen will be the keynote speaker, addressing the symposium’s theme of digital technology’s impact on photography and its disruption of art making and news cycles in a media obsessed world. Paglen’s experimental work frequently combines photography with other disciplines, like science and engineering, to examine our current reality and imagine alternative futures. He is joined on the schedule by three other distinguished artists: Nancy Burson, Lynn Hershman Leeson, and Josh Kline.
Panel: Curators and The Digital Museum
In the face of ever-evolving and emerging technologies, how does the traditional museum model support contemporary digital art making practices? Can it? Or does the online digital world experience create a new type of museum?
Conversation: Digital Evolution/Digital Revolution
Panel: Deepfake News
In recent years, photo- and video-editing software has grown ever more advanced and photography has become weaponized. For instance, subtly altered images have been found in science journals for questionable agendas. Building upon the frequently catastrophic effects of fake news, the rise of the deepfake—a video or an image that has been seamlessly manipulated using deep learning artificial intelligence—threatens not only to disrupt news cycles, but to critically undermine our understanding of what’s real and not real.
Comment by Nancy Burson: Seeing is Believing
From her early invention of facial morphing, Burson’s work explores the boundaries of legibility in photographic imagery and the overwhelming human desire to make sense of what we see.
Panel: Artists in the Forest of Signs
In a world of vastly expanded image technologies, artists face more and more complex choices as they navigate between real and virtual, form and data, signs and codes, human interpretation, and artificial intelligence.
Panel: Documentary Filmmaking: Observing Outside the Lines
In an era of ideologically driven news campaigns, documentary filmmaking is enjoying a resurgence due to its privileged relationship to the real, engaging—at times counter-intuitively—innovative techniques for conveying a director’s own sense of truth.
Artist Keynote with Trevor Paglen
MacArthur Genius Grant awardee Trevor Paglen investigates mass surveillance and data collection in an effort to see the historical moment we live in and imagine alternative futures.