ISCP TalkMay 12, 2020, 4–5pm
Artists at Work with Alison Nguyen: 'my favorite software is being here,' a lecture performance on Instagram Live
Artist-in-residence Alison Nguyen is too busy writing COVID-19 emergency grants to do her artist talk. Instead, she has digitally outsourced the talk to Andra8, a computer-generated woman whom she met on UpWork, a global freelancing platform. Andra8 is a simulacral subaltern working a variety of online jobs: as a virtual assistant, a data cleanser, a content creator, an emoji artist, and a life coach. For the first time in her virtual existence, Andra8 will be on “the main screen” with very few client parameters. She will speculate on the politics of digital labor, the role of women and minorities in today’s art economy, and the underlying systems of algorithmic control, topics she has not been invited to speak about in the past.
The lecture performance is an extension of Nguyen’s current work-in-progress my favorite software is being here which centers on Andra8’s isolated existence and labor in a photogenic and all-surveilled virtual void. It will be followed by a short talk with Nguyen and the technical director and cinematographer of Nguyen’s Andra8 video, Jonathan Beilin who has created the real-time animation set up for the lecture performance. Beilin is a digital artist and a professor of new and emerging media at Parsons School of Design.
This program is also supported, in part, by Alice and Lawrence Weiner; Hartfield Foundation; Jacques and Natasha Gelman Foundation; New York City Council District 34; New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, in partnership with the City Council; New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo and the New York State Legislature; Stavros Niarchos Foundation (SNF); VIA Art Fund and William Talbott Hillman Foundation.