Questions and answers
Description of an art project
What does the Word “picidae” mean?
picidae is the latin word for woodpecker. The first holes in the Berlin wall were hit by so called “Mauerspechte” (engl. wall woodpeckers) and gave the project its name: picidae (woodpecker).
What is picidae?
picidae is an art project, that deals with ones own horizons of imagination, the image of the world, communication and its hurdles and barriers. picidae negotiates the firewall (Internet censorship) eg. in China or in the Arabian states. picidae delivers a complete, readable and even clickable image of the censored web sites.
What’s the difference between a web site and its picidae version?
The picidae site is not made up of text and HTML elements (tables, images etc.). picidae delivers a screenshot. The page is visible but not machine-readable. This means the text cannot be searched, marked or saved as a text file. That’s why Internet censorship, which reacts on keywords (similar to search engines and correction programs), is not able to detect or suppress picidae pages.
Why is picidae art?
Innovation, new points of view and a new art term have always been designated for significant works of art. They always effect power structures and communication situations. picidae conforms classically to Fine Art because the project asks: How do I see the world? How do I make my proper picture of the world? How do I achieve a different view? How do I open up a new perspective, a new point of view? Am I able to see and think something different than I was supposed to?
Art searches for new ways (repetition is in terms of Fine Arts just copiing). The new images picidae provides are images of ones own horizon of imagination: images of a global communication and images concerning limitation and overcoming of ones own view. The images are generated in the head of the observer, exactly like in an image gallery. The point is not exactly what is displayed in an artwork but what is inspiring in the sense of Art history and reflection. Therefore picidae is in a line of an over 40 year old art history of the so-called new media, but also with concept art, art intervention and performance art.
What do you mean by the term horizon of imagination?
Horizon of imagination describes what is in “my grasp”: my imagination of the world. The imagination is not necessarily the world itself. I may get new opinions and insights. This openness is included in this term. Internet access is specific. It takes place in a specific place and is therefore subject to specific conditions - e.g. national censorship. picidae is exciting when different horizons of imagination become perceived. For example the term Internet is connoted differently in China. In a Chinese Internet Café one can experience how people experience the Internet Café as an intimate place where they play for themselves, communicate with their friends, watch movies, TV series and music videos.
The Internet and the use of public computer terminals in Europe evoke a less intimate reaction. We sit at home in front of the TV to experience relative privacy. In addition living conditions possession of communication media, housing conditions etc. act in China, result in the marginalisation that is then latched onto by the state Internet censorship. This complex conditions create fundamental differences in the form of Internet access and Internet usage in China than we know of it in the West, in Australia etc.
The Internet appears to us to be a global, open net. picidae taught us that this too is just our own idea. Internet censorship, Internet accesses and the ideas which are connected therewith are different. They vary from country to country often even within regions and between Internet providers. pici-servers that can be set up in different countries disclose these differences. They can show a comparability of the different, specific accesses and the utilisation and horizons of imagination that are based on it. We get to know the restrictions of our own idea of globalisation from the Chinese conditions. The Chinese, the Arabian world and we ourselves get with picidae an Instrument that overcomes and demonstrates our specific conditions. Because censorship is not visible, it is like a network problem or a simple omission not present for the observer like the censored element of which cannot be seen.
Why shouldn’t I call my pici-server or pici-proxy picidae?
When a pici-server or pici-proxy get installed, it is important not to have any appellation “picidae” neither on the web site nor in the Tooltip or in the name of the image. The word “picidae” should just be inserted as image. If a censorship authority indexes “picidae” your article is excepted from censorhip.picidae is not a centrally organised system and should not be reachable via a centralised database. Every access point and every server runs independently and without description and naming to prevent censorship and deactivation.
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