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My Most Personal Latitudes and Longitudes

By Rhizome

Global positioning systems, historically providing real-time navigation and intelligence information for the military, are currently finding novel and diverse commercial uses that range from driving directions to local business locators. As should be expected, many artists have turned this technology for global surveillance in on themselves and the everyday world outside their doors. In GPS Diary, London-based Thorsten Knaub has combined an interest in tracking bodily movements through space with the traditional artist's practice of keeping a daily sketch book. Knaub produced web-based drawings by carrying a GPS device with him everyday for one year, creating a linear, doodle-like composition for each day that can now be viewed individually, or downloaded as compressed representations of a month or the entire year. Knaub's artist statement points to the dehumanizing effects such technologies can have on our understandings of being in the world, making one's daily movements little more than a series of plotted points, and the drawings revel in that process of abstraction. The GPS Diary site also promises to become a hub for future GPS-driven work, so you may want to make a return trip. - Ryan Griffis

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