Entrevista a Igor Štromajer

Em Outubro de 2010, o artista esloveno Igor Štromajer esteve em Portugal para colaborar enquanto artista e consultor no projecto «A História é Clandestina». Aproveitando a sua presença, Jorge Martins Rosa e Margarida Carvalho entrevistaram-no para a Interact.

Jorge Martins Rosa [JMR]: In your website, you define your art as research on «tactical emotional states and traumatic low-tech strategies». In a world where everything is becoming high-tech, how do you manage to keep the «low» in «low-tech»?

Margarida Carvalho [MC]: Human relationships, namely relations of power, conflict and desire are focal aspects of many of your net pieces. Could we say that the communication of these forces and affects is a central topic of your online work?

MC: You identify yourself as an intimate mobile communicator and many of your online art pieces address the viewer on a direct way firstly because of their live broadcast guerrilla apparatus and also due to the rough webcam image. But could we say that directness and intimacy are frustrated by the mediation of the computer screen?

JMR: «Ballettikka Internettikka» is your longest-running series and thus the one more immediately associated with your work. How has the concept of «Ballettikka Internettikka» evolved throughout these years?

MC: In the Oppera Teorettikka Internettikka project you were singing the code, in Ballettikka Internettikka you were dancing it — the act of coding is a fundamental part of your work. Could you further develop on the importance of the code in your artistic universe?

JMR: A few days ago, you were telling me that Web 2.0 has killed net-art. Could you elaborate on that? What’s the place and meaning of web-art or net-art today?

MC: The use of webcams to stream live from personal environments to the Internet and the development of life-logs as archives of the everyday have resulted in some relevant projects by artists submitting themselves to a form of self-surveillance. However, with the rise of online social networking the use of surveillance technologies became participatory. The potential dangers of surveillance on the web are well known, ranging from privacy invasion to social sorting and fraud. But on the other hand do you think we can address participatory surveillance as a form of empowerment, involving sharing and mutuality?

MC: But maybe if you do self-surveillance you appropriate your own experience at a personal level; it’s quite different if we only think of a dataflow as if we were dealing with a certain transcendence of the data. That poetic idea of a surveillance camera permanently recording and transferring data is beautiful but maybe self-surveillance could relate to a more personal appropriation of the data…