His artistic approach investigates and denounces the power structures that define global society today and how the control and diffusion of information affects every sector through technology, starting from the life of each individual, up to politics and the economy.
Paolo Cirio (Turin, 1979) is an Italian conceptual artist, activist, and hacker and the central themes of his activity are linked to technology, privacy, and power dynamics in contemporary society. Cirio has created projects that mix art, activism, and technology to stimulate critical reflection on social and political issues.
In 2011’s Face to Facebook, the artist, together with his colleague Alessandro Ludovico, created a website that exploited Facebook security flaws to collect and display public profiles. This project has sparked widespread discussion about online privacy issues, social platform policies, and how personal information is handled on the Internet.
The Capture project consists of the creation of a database with the faces of four thousand French police officers: the artist collected on the web a thousand images taken in public places of the officers during the demonstrations in France.
Each image was then processed with facial recognition software to identify the officers, then posters with their faces were created and distributed on the streets of Paris. This project has opened a great debate on the potential uses and abuses of facial recognition and the use of artificial intelligence. Putting in the foreground those who should protect us.
The Italian artist’s production is aimed at anyone who wants to receive food for thought on what is happening around us, probably without fully realizing it. And precisely among global emergencies, climate change is one of the inspirational themes of some works, such as Climate Culpable and Climate Evidence.
Last but not least, the news that two environmental activists poured soup on the armored glass that protects the Mona Lisa at the Louvre Museum in Paris; the two women wore a t-shirt with the words “Riposte Alimentaire” (Food Response) to promote “the right to a healthy and sustainable diet”.
So why did you choose to go down this path on climate change?
“I began to be interested in climate change as early as 2010 (Drowning-NYC.net), dealing with how NYC will be impacted. At the time there was an initial buzz about it but the data and research were mainly projections of the future.
2019 was the first year in which the climate crisis became omnipresent globally and began its exponential journey. Precise data on the emissions of large fossil fuel companies were only published in 2017, which I incorporated into the work ‘Climate Culpable’, and only recently have the studies that these companies have kept secret for decades and which I use in the series of works ‘Climate Legal Evidence’. This new data-inspired my new interest in climate change, but also a gut feeling, an intuition that has pushed me to focus on this issue full-time for three years now”.
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