[ISEA2019] Artist Statement: François Quévillon – Manœuvres

Artist Statement

Video series.

The Manœuvres video series is part of a body of works that François Quevillon has been developing since 2016 based on observing the development of autonomous cars and dash cam compilations. On one hand, several technical, economical, moral and ethical issues are raised by vehicles that maneuver without human intervention. On the other, dash cam videos display accidents or spectacular events that portray roads as places where the unexpected occurs. The works play with the tension that arises when confronting mobile robotics systems with the unpredictable nature of the world.
The Manœuvres series consists of six short videos. Perception is blurred as the camera and its microphone are gradually obstructed by snow in Peripheral Vision. The Iterative Roundabout shows a deep neural network training to decode its surroundings while driving around. The environment slowly reveals itself during this repetitive learning process as the computer vision system tries to identify correctly the road covered with snow. An object detection algorithm identifies and tracks insects while the vehicle is immobilized in Bug Tracker. Lost in the Forest revisits a 4 and a half hours journey in maze of muddy forest roads. In The Crossing, registration points and displacement vectors calculate the future position of objects while a vehicle crosses a bridge. The same optical flow technique gives the impression that the car is contemplating the waves breaking on the shore in Flow. Video: Manœuvres (extraits/excerpts)

  • François Quévillon is an artist from Montréal (Canada) that develops an interdisciplinary practice through installation, sound, images and technologies. His work explores phenomena of the world and perception by the implementation of processes sensitive to their fluctuations and to the interference of contextual elements. He investigates how technology affects or redefines human cognition, culture, the environment, our relationships to space, to time and to one another. His work has been presented at exhibitions and events dedicated to contemporary art, cinema and digital creation. Among them : Sundance’s New Frontier exhibition (Park City), Spaces Under Scrutiny at the Knockdown Center (New York), International Symposium on Electronic Art (Albuquerque, Dubaï and Gwangju), Museu da Imagem e do Som, Festival Internacional de Linguagem Eletrônica and Hipersônica (São Paulo), IndieBo (Bogotá), LOOP Barcelona, Plug-In at Contemporary Istanbul, Show Off Paris, Festival de la Imagen (Manizales), European Conference on Computer Vision (Munich), Mois Multi (Québec), NeurIPS, RIDM, Elektra and International Digital Art Biennal (Montréal).  francois-quevillon.com