We knew a girl in high school whose father, in an effort to dissuade her from becoming a drunk, got her loaded on tequila shots one night and forced her to do 100 push-ups when she woke in the morning. This led to her vomiting profusely. Similarly, artist Hasan Elahi has tried to disabuse the U.S. government of its taste for surveilling him, by tracking and documenting himself exhaustively, from the toilets he uses to the half-finished hot dogs with sauerkraut he eats. More than 20,000 images of his life exist on his website, www.trackingtransience.net, as well as real-time information about his location, generated by a GPS he keeps in his pocket. After being detained at the Detroit airport in 2002 by the FBI, which had mistakenly added him to a terrorist watch list, Elahi decided to circumvent future trouble by staying in regular contact with the FBI. Hiding in Plain Sight
contains several monitors that stream images from his life, collected in excruciating detail via his cellphone and other devices. Persuading the United States government to abandon surveillance may be as feasible as trying to get a teenager not to drink, but the process of resistance is infinitely more fascinating.
The opening reception for Hiding in Plain Sight starts at 7 p.m.
Tuesdays-Saturdays. Starts: March 2. Continues through April 23, 2011