[ISEA2022] Paper: Hugo Felipe Idárraga Franco & Paloma Gonzáles Días — Algorithmic Vision and the Dialectic of Visibility


Short paper, theme: Humans and NonHumans: Aesthetic experience and speculation
Venue: CCCB, date: June 15

Keywords: surveillance, control, algorithm, visibility, invisibility

This short paper inquires on a dialectic of contemporary visibility regimes run by a politics of control. In that dialectic, all humans beings have to be ceaselessly visible to algorithmic vision surveillance systems. At the same time, the sources of these surveillance systems are out of the public eye. This short paper concludes by exploring several alternatives to get free from this dialectic.

This article proposes to analyze the definition of the human being through the ‘eyes’ of machine learning models dedicated to the recognition and classification of people. For this, the image of a dialectic of surveillance and social control is offered based on the constant visibility of those affected and the invisibility of those who benefit from this system. The algorithmic vision emerges here as a privileged place to exercise this power, but at the same time as the place of vulnerability, from where it is possible to transform this dialectic and the power relations that it determines. The article then proposes a reflection on the different counter-surveillance strategies that take advantage of creativity and aesthetic experience to think about other power relations, that is, about other possibilities to think about what a human being is today.

  • Graduated with a Major in Philosophy and two master’s degrees in Communication and Digital Humanities, Hugo Idarraga (ES) complements his academic formation with experience in website applications development, analysis of political contexts, and working with youth grassroots organizations. Along with this, extensive experience as a professor in the philosophy of media and new technologies has inspired him to think critically on art, adversarial examples, and machine learning classification models. [Source: http://hugoidarraga.info]
  • Paloma González Díaz (ES) is Lecturer and researcher at UOC and BAU. Member of the GREDITS research group. Expert in new media art, design and communication. Her research focuses on relating technological control and its impact on society from a critical point of view. She focuses, above all, on the vision of digital creators. http://uncoveringctrl.com