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Street Ghosts

The artist Paolo Cirio prints life-sized pictures of people found on Google’s Street View, and posts them at the exact spot where they were taken.

For the “Street View” function of its online maps, search-behemoth Google has been industriously photographing the entire world. They don’t bother to ask permission of the cities they capture, or the people who are photographed, literally in passing, as collateral damage in Google’s dreams of digitization. The artist Paolo Cirio turns Google’s practice on its head, and uses the company’s copyrighted photographs, without permission, to change the image of the streets. Life-sized pictures of people found on Google’s Street View are printed and posted at the exact spot where they were photographed. The posters are printed on thin paper and affixed with wallpaper paste on the walls of public buildings, giving them an ethereal quality – as if Cirio has made visible the specters of what would otherwise only have existed in Google’s digital world. These street ghosts have already shown up in New York, Marseille and Berlin, and will now also adorn buildings in Amsterdam, on invitation from IDFA DocLab and De Brakke Grond. While the physical evidence of the ghosts’ appearance may vanish quickly, their documentation on the project’s website will remain forever.

Project details

Year of development :2013
Created by:Paolo Cirio

Available formats

Official website

http://streetghosts.net/