Contant Dullaart: Premiere of Terms of Service will see the artist release a new series of works as a response to new Terms of Service conditions of several internet services. The event is part of the New Silent Series at the New Museum on Thursday, May 24th, 2012 at 7 p.m. Rhizome spoke with Dullaart over email in advance of the event:
Rhizome: So much of your work, whether it is a website, video or curatorial project as in Lost and Found contains a performance component. Can you describe your approach to performance, and how it will manifest in Terms of Service?
CD: Like JODI I too like to think of online artworks as sharing traits with performative art, as if the computers on the network are actively mediating the users experience in a manner that I designed and set to work, but have no final control over. As if I instructed an actor to go out into the streets and converse with strangers in a semi scripted manner. Most of my online works involve a sequence of actions that take place mostly within a personal atmosphere (at home or in an office cubicle) on a computer. And these activities function clearly and inseparably within a larger social and technical context (the rest of the internet), mostly within a short period of time where the technical options were available for these works to exist. Next to this my physical relationship to this ever evolving technical medium landscape interests me. What is my position in this whole thing, am i just an active user that is slaving away regurgitating content through these brave new media, or am I seeing myself, my online representation as material to perform with? And how does my body actually relate to all of this dissociation juggling? Can I humanize this perfectly designed fake neutral corporate online space? And what is my position in this social commodification process? Mixing the performative behaviors of online art, performing with online content, actual live performing, and performing on the social web, within the grey zones of many terms of service agreements.