Stephanie Syjuco "FREE TEXTS (An Open Source Reading Room)," 2012, commissioned for the ZERO1 Biennial, San Jose, CA

Stephanie Syjuco

"Lossy: On the Politics of Networked Flows and Degraded Systems"

Date 3/31/14

Affiliation Artist and Professor, Art Practice, UC Berkeley


Traditionally used to refer to the degradation of an image when compressed as a digital JPG file, “lossy” is a state in which digital information is discarded for the sake of file size. Resolution is lost, detail is changed and fineness is compromised. In this process, however, extra pixels may also be added, ultimately transforming and re-authoring the resulting Doppelgänger image. Long interested in issues of analog-to-digital mistranslations, public access, and flows of information and capital, visual artist Stephanie Syjuco will present recent projects exploring the murky territory of the physicality of objects in relationship to virtual space, "resolution" as a metaphor for craft, and authorship in an era of co-authored or crowdsourced information. By flipping the “loss” of original resolution from being a negative condition into a potentially generative one, her works scrutinize how active transformation occurs through misuse and degradation. Perhaps this new, bastard “un-original” has much more to say by way of poetic narrative, speculative fiction and alternative readings than its static predecessor ever did. Syjuco will also introduce several ongoing projects utilizing online networks such as Facebook, Ebay, Google searches, and Craigslist to explore how the cannibalization of what appear to be limited structures of use and interaction can be leveraged towards critique.


Stephanie Syjuco is a visual artist and educator who utilizes physical surrogates, counterfeits and digital networks to address the political and social implications of economies and labor in an era of late capitalism. She has participated in numerous exhibitions including at: MoMA/P.S.1, the Whitney Museum of American Art, The San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, Frieze Projects (London), ZKM Center for Art and Technology (Germany), Z33 Space for Contemporary Art (Belgium), Universal Studios Gallery (Beijing) and Garanti Gallery (Istanbul), among others. She is currently collaborating with the FLACC Workplace for Visual Artists in Genk, Belgium, on a new body of work utilizing 3-D scanning of Belgian and Congolese antiquities to produce hybrid objects addressing the legacy of colonialism, empire, and trade routes. She is an Assistant Professor in Sculpture and Ceramic Sculpture at UC Berkeley.

-- As of 3/31/14

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