People may not be talking about it as much these days, but the government is still watching you and keeping a list, just like Santa Claus, only less jolly. Artists have been designing interesting ways to help the public avoid the eagle eye of the government, including "Stealthwear" from artist Adam Harvey and fashion designer Johanna Bloomfield. The latest in anti-surveillance gear is something that looks like it belongs in a DC Comics fan-fiction film, but it gets the job done in terms of shielding your identity from all of the facial recognition cameras out in the world.
The device is the "Face Cage," and it was conceived and designed by artist Zach Blas. According to Al Jazeera, Blas' creation is "a skeletal mask made of pointed slivers of metal that rests atop the wearer’s face — rather like a medieval torture device — and highlights the features biometric technology uses to identify individuals." Blas also created another device known as the "Facial Weaponization Suite" which completely hides the faces of protesters from any kind of recognition software, replacing it with a brightly colored blob that "produces physical presence that can’t be broken down by biometrics."
Of the Face Cage, Blas writes on his website: "Face Cages is a dramatization of the abstract violence of the biometric diagram. Diagrams are fabricated as three-dimensional metal objects, evoking a material resonance with handcuffs, prison bars, and torture devices used during slavery in the US and the Medieval period... These cages exaggerate and perform the irreconcilability of the standardized, neoliberal biometric diagram with the materiality of the human face itself–and the violence that occurs when the two are forced to coincide."
The design for both the Face Cages and the Facial Weaponization Suite are interesting, but we really hope the world isn't moving in a direction where we could need these in the future.
[via Al Jazeera]