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Soundbook for the artist Louisa Clement

“What one experiences on a small scale is nothing other than what defines the world on a larger scale.”

In the exhibition “Double Bind”,  Kunsthalle Gießen presents the latest work by the artist Louisa Clement, until the beginning of October 2021. In collaboration with the book designer Lena Mozer, from Kühle & Mozer, Cologne, Audio Logo created a sound book to accompany the exhibition as a talking catalog. Born in Bonn in 1987, the artist Clement studied at the Academy of Fine Arts in Karlsruhe and the Art Academy in Düsseldorf, most recently as a master class student of Andreas Gursky, one of the world’s most successful contemporary photographers, and has already received numerous awards for her work. Her works can be seen in many international museums and exhibitions. With “Double Bind”, she brings clones of herself to life in the form of speaking human puppets in her own image. An Artificial Intelligence (AI) algorithm, which Clement has elaborately “fed” with personal, sometimes very intimate data and her voice, allows the clones to conduct independent dialogue. The boundaries between person and doll, between real and imitated reality are blurred. “I use the dolls to illuminate the critical side of online life. What does life in this network do to us as human beings? How do I present myself in social media, what image of myself do others see which has nothing to do with myself?

”Clement explains the basic idea behind her work. “In social media, we reveal so much personal information about ourselves, we create an image of ourselves in data form. The dolls have my personal data, imitate my voice and facial expressions, they are my image and at the same time the embodiment of what the Internet is. Because what we experience on a small scale is nothing else than what defines the world on a larger scale.”  The dolls, which were made in China, contain artificial intelligence that draws on the data repertoire of Clement and Google so that they can speak independently and interact with visitors. The intelligent algorithm was developed in a research project at the chair for computational linguistics of Prof. Vera Demberg at the University of Saarbrücken. The Kunsthalle Gießen describes the interactive component of the exhibition: “Fed with artificial intelligence, the result is an algorithm-based character that also strengthens the social component through discussions with exhibition visitors. The more intensely the “representative” is challenged in terms of content and language, the more the originally implanted ideas mix with the impulses from outside. ” The exhibition is accompanied by an extraordinary sound book entitled “Louisa”, which Audio Logo produced in an edition of 800. Upon opening the book, a recorded dialogue sequence from the conversation with one of the puppets can be heard. Clement explains why her decision was initially made in favor of electronic refinement with sound: “This is an incredibly personal piece of work that contains so much private information about me. Speaking and listening to one another are broken down to an equally personal level through the medium of sound. I flip open the book and it speaks to me! You are immediately in the context of the interaction. That’s why sound is so important to my work.”

But it won’t stop with sound alone. A limited edition hardcover video book in a custom made box with the artist’s signature is currently also in production at Audio Logo. Among other things, it will show a newly created video work by Clement, which was created as a reflection on the Double Bind project. After the exhibition in Giessen, the dolls will travel on, including to Los Angeles, where they will be on view as one of the selected works by previous scholarship recipients as part of the 25th anniversary of the German artist residence “Villa Aurora”. Louisa Clement is meanwhile pondering her next project: “Double Bind has given me a lot of experience, especially in working with China during the pandemic. In my next work I would therefore like to pursue the question of what it means to live as a humanist and a European in today’s economic world. ”

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