Kites & Websites
A Journey in Space and Time
By Domenico Quaranta
The actual body of the Internet is yet to be explored. Internet Landscapes, by US born, Paris based artist Evan Roth, is a project that brings him to travel through the actual body of the Internet, by visiting and documenting some of its physical manifestations. More precisely, Roth is interested in visiting submarine fiber optic cable landing locations, places where a national or continental network gets connected to the global Internet, which allow people to communicate instantly with any part of the world. The artist selects these locations on a map and, whenever he has the chance to spend some time in a new country, and to fund his traveling, he visits them, doing audio and video recording. The results of this process are later turned into artworks.
The Internet Landscapes project is an actual journey. When you set out to do a journey, you can prepare your luggage, study maps, read travel guides, do vaccinations, prepare everything, but you are unlikely to know in advance what you’ll experience, and what you’ll find out. What Evan Roth found out when he started visiting the “physical Internet” in the first place were simple landscapes, where the “Internet” layer is somehow removed. Interviewed, he said: “the longer I work on this new series, the more peripheral the Internet becomes in my thinking. I’ve been using the phrase “Internet landscapes” to informally describe the work, but lately I’ve been dropping the “Internet” and just calling them “landscapes” (which I think is more true to what they are).”