Ivar Veermäe was born in Tallinn, Estonia, in 1982 and currently lives and works in both Tallinn and Berlin, Germany. He received a BA in photography from the Estonian Academy of Arts in 2009 and continues his MA studies at Space Strategies department in Weissensee Kunsthochschule Berlin.
He has had several solo exhibitions in Estonia and his work has been exhibited in group exhibitions at the Art Museum of Estonia, Art Hall of Tallinn, the Estonian Contemporary Art Museum, the Zentrum für Kunst und Urbanistic in Berlin, the Sociale Verzekeringsbank in Holland, the Kulturhuset Bronden in Denmark. He has participated with perfomances in Hebbel am Ufer, Berlin and in Month of Performance Art Berlin in ACUD Theater. His videos are being screened in various
screenings at the AND Festival in Manchester, Crosstalk festival in Budapest, and in Virtual Memorial, Cambodia.
Most of his work is dealing with the issues of public space (city space and space in internet), networks, new media and group behaviour. He has also worked on several public space installation and performative projects.
The main focus in my work is dealing with the issues of public space and group behaviour. I think that public space reflects directly or indirectly on processes in society and it is constantly changing. In the time of „ubiquitous computing“ also the meaning of public space is changing. When boundaries between private and public blur, the space could be redefined as an accessible space. In my work process I use photography and video as well performative and interfering tactics, like public space installations. Also I´m trying to find and use connections between city space and virtual space. The goal of my work is to analyze the actions and processes in these spaces.
In the exhibition “Black Box Recognition” i´m creating a dialogue between my two new works “re_cogniton” and “Kurfürstendamm 26”.
“Kurfürstendamm 26” deals with emergence of big consumer electronics companies, whose products are well designed and function as easy-to-use surfaces. By using technological objects, consumers are gaining information, but also creating valuable data for network and technology companies. The functioning-mechanisms of these companes could be seen metaphorically as black boxes, which in science and engieneering are defined as devices or systems, which can be viewed in terms of their input and output, without knowing about their internal workings.
Video installation “re_cognition” is based on storage I secretly filmed in public transport and other temporary places in Germany, Sweden and Estonia. Lenght of the gaze in public transport is emotionally affected, possibly creating weird moment, when lasting too long. Use of “smart” technology in public space is growing and it is creating huge amounts of GPS, search and other data, which is stored in some “black boxes”= data centers. Storing visual information in public space without agreement from those, who are stored, is not allowed for private persons. On the other hand, it is allowed for state and private companies, who are owning surveillance systems. With “re_cognition” im drawing attention to facial recognition technologies, used in surveillance systems and also social networks. It is growing tendency, which will be used for security or personalized advertising in big shopping centers for example. I want to draw attention to the notion of existence of state or privately ownded “black boxes”.