In 2015 Mobile Arts Platform (MAP) artists Peter Foucault and Chris Treggiari will collaborate with Aaron McKenzie from the CCA Center for Art and Public Life, and Cole Goins from the Center For Investigative Reporting (CIR) to create Eyes On Oakland. Through the journalistic lens of community surveillance, this participatory research project and resulting social sculpture will investigate ways in which Oakland communities are changing because of new economic pressures being placed on established neighborhood identities.
Eyes On Oakland will be included in the Who Is Oakland exhibition at the Oakland Museum of California from April 11th – mid July 2015 and will feature both an interactive information-sharing site within the museum and a mobile satellite sculpture created by transforming a classic 1963 Ford Falcon van into an information collection/re-presentation space that can engage with the public in Oakland neighborhoods.
By utilizing multiple installation sites we will explore first-hand the most important issues Oakland neighborhoods are facing in the wake of rapid economic and social community changes. Currently Oakland is experiencing rapid gentrification and an exponential rise in cost of living due to the Tech Boom and other contributing factors that are impacting the Bay Area. Many people who work in San Francisco and Silicon Valley can no longer afford to live in these areas and are re-locating to Oakland, displacing many of it’s long time residents.
At the same time, the project will explore the practice of modern journalism, the role of surveillance (and information collection in general) in these communities, and the space iterative, community-focused journalism can occupy in an increasingly digitalized society. By interviewing participants through video, sound and written responses (both at the museum and in neighborhoods throughout Oakland) we will be able to form a qualitative archive of responses that can then be shared back into these communities through on-site video clips, live performances and video projections.
Through this project we want to uncover the issues that are most impacting Oakland’s citizens and collect a variety of experiences and insights to create a community portrait and expanded dialog about the role and expansion of local surveillance. This archive will continue to grow and expand its scope throughout the course of the museum exhibition. Through this project, we want to experiment with new, scalable ways that journalists, artists and local residents can work together to highlight, discuss and act on key issues.
You can follow the project on Twitter at EyesOnOak and find out where the van will be heading to next!
Here is a great article that KQED posted on the project: http://ww2.kqed.org/news/2015/04/09/new-project-confronts-citizens-on-surveillance-in-oakland
In addition Good Magazine posted this article on our project: