Rodolfo Peraza: JailHead.com




 
  • ©2017, Rodolfo Peraza, JailHead.com
  • ©2017, Rodolfo Peraza, JailHead.com

Artist(s):


Title:


JailHead.com

Exhibition:


SIGGRAPH 2017: Unsettled Artifacts: Technological Speculations from Latin America

Creation Year:


2017

Category:


Augmented Reality/Virtual Reality

Artist Statement:


That Which Contains Emptiness is a series of multimedia works by Rodolfo Peraza exploring the interiors of abandoned historical spaces designed for social engineering and control. From this series, JailHead.com (2009/2017) is an ongoing web-based project that recreates in virtual reality the Cuban Presidio Modelo, an abandoned prison built after Bentham’s Panopticon penitentiary model. The jail is located on the former Isla los Pinos—an island southwest of Cuba, now named Isla de la Juventud—and was considered a definitive example of efficient prisoner control. It became emblematic for housing historical figures both pre- and post-Cuban Revolution, including Fidel and Raúl Castro.

By virtually mirroring this existing architecture, JailHead.com explores internet surveillance as a regular praxis exercised by internet service providers (ISPs), governments, and corporations in our daily use of the internet. Wearing an Oculus Rift device, players are able to “walk through” the cells of the prison in an immersive experience. Conceived as a multiplayer video game, it can be played via a game server over the internet with other players around the world. Users’ IP addresses become their “inmate” numbers, and they are able to interact with other inmates who are online at the same time.