Failing to Distinguish Between a Tractor Trailer and the Bright White Sky
James Bridle, taking as its central subject the self-driving car, presents works that test the limits of human knowing and machine perception, strategize modes of resistance to algorithmic regimes, and devise new myths and poetic possibilities for an age of computation.
The title of this exhibition is taken from an accident report into a fatal crash involving an automobile whose self-driving system failed to alert its human driver to an oncoming hazard. The autonomous car and the issues it raises stand in for many of the questions facing us today — from our relationship to technology and artificial intelligence, to the automation of labour and the political opacity of complex systems.
James Bridle worked with software and geography to create the components for his own self-driving car: an autonomous vehicle which learns to get lost. Using freely available tools and research papers, through a process of engineering and self-education, the artist seeks to understand both how to appropriate contemporary technologies for divergent purposes, and, when necessary, how to resist them.
James Bridle is a British artist, writer, and theorist based in Athens. Bridle’s installations and works have been commissioned by the Serpentine Galleries, the Victoria and Albert Museum, the Hayward Gallery, and The Photographers’ Gallery, London; FACT, Liverpool; the Istanbul Design Biennale and the Oslo Architecture Triennale. His work has been shown at major international institutions including the Barbican and the Whitechapel Gallery, London; KW Institute for Contemporary Art, Berlin; Museum Angewandte Kunst, Frankfurt; ZKM, Karlsruhe; MoMA, New York; and the National Arts Center, Tokyo.