Black box is a widely used term that refers to many things: movie theaters, transistors, flight recorders, algorithms, the human brain. It is also an abstract theory that relies on observable inputs and outputs to define the invisible functions of a device, network or object. The box is “black” because the opaque facade obstructs visibility. In order to understand the internal workings of the box, one must enter its system.
In an artistic context, black box theory provides a way to explore systems of the unknown which are widely accepted by society – particularly the social, political, ethical, and aesthetic implications concealed within a culture increasingly shaped by technology. How might art reveal black boxes? Is art, itself, a black box?
All newhives tagged #BlackBoxing before Friday May 15 will be considered submissions for Black Box – a new art, film and technology festival produced by Aktionsart in partnership with SIFF, SAM, Cornish and DXARTS in Seattle, Washington – and a featured collection on NewHive’s homepage.