Italian artist Paolo Cirio is concerned with power structures in contemporary society and how the latter affect the lives of ordinary people individually and as a collective. In particular, he investigates how today’s technologies, especially virtual reality and computer generated and mediated information, create realities that dominate how we think and live today. Whether the artist steals one million Facebook profiles to create his own dating website; hands out mock credit cards under the project headlined P2P Gift Credit Card - Gift Finance; creates a ‘virtual sit-in’ in the cyberspace of the NATO website domain; or whether he investigates Cayman Islands’ offshore jurisdiction by hacking and leaking the names of companies having bank accounts there: Cirio’s practice is controversial, provocative, and always asks questions about democratic accountability and practice in our contemporary world.
Open Society Structures is a simple illustration of the artist’s ideas about how democracy functions, and how the economy, culture, and individual people feed into, and are influenced by, the democratic process and its attributes. Visually, the work resembles a simple diagram, but the animation creates a more challenging illustration where the viewer is asked to figure out what influences whom and vice versa.
Cirio lives and works in New York.