Jaywalking, if you see something click here


The contemporary yin and yang of privacy and surveillance is full of conceptual grey areas, especially in relation to surveillance and the degree of agency or passivity a user can assume. Uneasiness (about being observed or observing something illegal) is related to surveillance and its invasiveness. Jaywalking by Dries Depoorter, part of his Sheriff Software series, exploits this uneasiness through a seamless remote connection. It is an installation where live surveillance monitors show a crossroad. The piece automatically catches jaywalkers, giving visitors the option to send an incriminating screenshot to the nearest police station. The eventual gesture takes place along the path of assuming the role of controller rather than controlled, pushing the observer into an uneasy metaphorical junction (as partner in crime or friend of the police). The whole machine, as an abstract system, perfectly embodies the authority and the power of ubiquitous surveillance over an individual.


  • Dries Depoorter — part 1

  • Dries Depoorter — part 2