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datatown#2 , 2002
Lambda print
70.0 x 120.0 cm
The collective made its entrance on the contemporary art scene with datatown (2002). In a series of images, a city shows its night landscape, lit by a few points of light only, such as shop signs, road markings, notice boards, dashboards, and so on. The city space itself is buried under a thick layer of shadows that leaves only a selection of easily recognisable signs peering through the gloom.

The network of roads, advertising posters, names of places, buildings and streets are so many hints that society puts at our disposal for moving around. Thanks to the singling out these graphic reference points from the urban landscape, a recomposed space looms up. The undifferentiated expanse of black covering the parts not associated with the signage gives the illusion of a limitless virtual space.

The collective doesn’t work to ape reality through its virtuoso mastery of computer-generated techniques, but rather to manipulate images that conjure up the most immediate reality in order to foreground the interpretative grid of the codes and signs that governs our city environment.
collectif_fact (Annelore Schneider/Claude Piguet/Swann Thommen), datatown#2 , 2002