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CopyCat Pack 2.0

video installation
4:55 min

3-channel / splitcreen (75) / HD 1080p
Dolby Digital 5.1 / English

video
4:55 min
1 channel / splitscreen (25) / HD 1080p

stereo, English
Germany 2010

 


Synopsis:

The 14-year-old THE SINGING STAR from the USA sings playback, whereas VASSLI from Norway screams directly in the mike. The Belgian BUILDING C plays the guitar in a well behaved way, while the rest of the users arrive. The community is complete and the French Duo JKINGJULIEN confidently performs its rehearsed dance routine. The 12-year-old girls JELLY BEAN JAYDEN still practice to send another video response to the DAFT BODIES girls.
COPYCAT PACK 2.0 is a collage of 86 (31 screening version) synchronized YOUTUBE videos by different editors, who perform the song HARDER, BETTER, FASTER, STRONGER by DAFT PUNK, a French electro band.

Since a few years, internet communities such as YOUTUBE, MYSPACE or SECOND LIFE have been expanding in the so-called Web 2.0. In those platforms the users can create their own accounts including a profile or even a perfect new identity – facilities for a communication with a dispersed audience.
The work COPYCAT PACK 2.0 shows 31 of nearly 350 collected video clips, which were viewed and downloaded by the search key HADER BETTER FASTER STRONGER on the internet platform YOUTUBE.
The several videos show rehearsed skills or desired self-portraits, which are designed to create a picture which is as positive as possible.
Philosophers like HEGEL or HOBBES would have probably been able to develop new ideas on the discussion of the STATE OF NATURE by analysing this kind of anarchical CALL AND RESPONSE for acceptance. Today market research institutes use those society FACEBOOKS for modern intentions.
Thereby the sender nourishes the natural curiosity of the receiver who is fascinated by the seemingly unwatched and intimate view into the senders‘ privacy, which is usually refused in real life.
A closer look at the video clips allows an indirect view on character, age, birth and social background of the sender, who runs the risk to display a real personal image one normally wants to hide.
Once uploaded, the original private video becomes common property. Thereby the author looses his/her influence on publication and copying. Though de jure one keeps it, the right of the own picture is abandoned due to the medium internet.
If you transformed this loss of privacy to a real life situation, it would be rather unacceptable. What is the reason for this different behaviour? What distinguishes a user from a real person – or the community from the society? Either it is the anonymity and public privacy of the World Wide Web or a kind of habituation, due to the effect of the phenomenon internet. One click and you will get absolution by the like-minded users.
Knowingly the video work COPYCAT PACK 2.0 activates the alliance of a split screen to show the fascination of the web 2.0 including all risks.

 


Background:

In October 2001, the French electro band DAFT PUNK published the song HARDER, BETTER, FASTER, STRONGER on their album DISCOVERY. The title resembles a line of the famous opening sequence of the television series THE SIX MILLION DOLLAR MAN. The melody is based on a sample of the song COLA BOTTLE BABY by EDWIN BIRDSONG.
The YOUTUBE-Buzz about the song was triggered by a video made by the user AUSTIN HALL´10, who uploaded his clip on June 6, 2007. In the video he writes the syllables of the song text on his fingers and the back of his hand. Like a mime, he synchronously composes rehearsed gestures to the song text.
Due to the popularity of his video, he was invited by the American television show ELLEN SHOW in September 2007 to have a live performance; the degree of his popularity was boosted even more and Austin Hall´10 suddenly had a glimpse of fame.
In October two American girls published the video response DAFT BODIES. They dance choreographically to the lyrics, labelled with the text lines on their arms, legs and hips. Their movements and headdresses are based on the official futuristic video clip INTERSTELLAR 555 by DAFT PUNK and reminds one of a robot.
Inspired by both videos a lot of covers and remakes have been put on YOUTUBE. In the video work COPY CAT PACK 2.0 a small representative sample of them is seen.

 


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