Bronaċ Ferran



A writer and curator based in London.  She is Director of Boundaryobject.org (www.boundaryobject.org). Current projects include ‘Mind Over Media’ essay for forthcoming book ‘Time and Motion: Redefining the Future of Work’, a FACT/Royal College of Art initiative to be published by Liverpool University Press in December 2013; she is also editing a book about the ‘Visualise’ programme of exhibitions and events which she guest curated at the Ruskin Gallery, Cambridge School of Art, in 2012, featuring Ernest Edmonds, Eduardo Kac, William Latham, Liliane Lijn, Alan Sutcliffe and others. She has been a member of Transmediale and Prix Ars Electronica Hybrid Arts juries as well as the international advisory group for the SEAD policy initiative. A founder member of the bricolabs network, she reviews for Neural journal and is planning two challenging exhibitions for 2014-2015.

RENEW 2013 – Abstract

Bronaċ Ferran and Alessandro Ludovico: Portraits of the XXI century: representation and misrepresentation of face and artistic responses

The appearance of our individual faces in other peoples’ screens is now quotidian. This occurs through everyday tagging, Google searches, indexing and random selection of “known people,”  through profile pictures in social media etc. Personal profiles lie within bureaucratic archives, are held in passport and ID records and captured, often trivially, in the documentation of everyday movements by surveillance cameras. The concept of the digital portrait is also held in question. Almost daily new techniques are noted with rapid exposure on online networks producing a serious investigation in concepts of the coherent or cohesive self and into production of the image or self-image. A mass digitalization of portraits is coupled with increasingly ubiquitous retouching software tools, many specialized in retouching of faces and portraits. These are digitally shaping a visual field which relates closely to a specific area of our brains: an area of the temporal lobe dedicated to the recognition of faces. With the dynamic combination of multiplication of our digitized faces with extreme simplicity of manipulation, artworks and media interventions are being created to intrinsically anomalous effect.