Machine learning algorithms - Alexey Boriskin, original dataset, wood, faux fur, textile, digital print
Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic (Clarke's third law)
Evolutionary mechanisms endowed humankind with superstitious fear of the unknown and invisible.
In September 2019, Siberian shaman was arrested on trek to exorcise Vladimir Putin. The reaction of Russian authorities means that magic weapon seems real to them, lies along their beliefs.
Meanwhile we are diving even deeper down the darkness of the world of invisible images: products of computer vision and recognition which control us more and more thoroughly. Neural networks are seen as black boxes and oracles. Contemporary neoliberal markets are soaked with irrational, archaic and sacral theology of randomness.
Could the modern shamans living in the epoch of the technological horror and machine learning have special vision to see through the world of the invisible, fortune-tell on the big data and predict the future? Would they control the power of the elements and herds of unmanned creatures? There is a curse in the shamanism which is sent with the animal to the house of the person to be cursed. New animals are the wifi-controlled lamps and thermostats, smart fridges and vacuum cleaners.
We are living in the opaque world full of fundamentalism, conspiracy theories and archaic ways of thinking. "Yahoo boys" gangs still practise bloody rituals and sacrifices to secure a successful outcome of their hacks and computer fraud. The Amazon clouds are raining down the Amazon forest, a spiritual center for shamanism.
Shamans are the men in the middle between the world of the living and worlds of virtual avatars, reality and invisible kingdoms of digital divinities and spirits. They are wearing bit masks, hiding their faces from the recognition systems. They are still beating their drums, but instead of summoning a spirit they are carrying a row hammer attack.
Work includes a media installation with the voice assistant Amazon Alexa. It reads predictions generated from datasets about the future technologies in shamanism.