I have always been interested in “camera-performative language” and “performativity”, and since the Mayan apocalypse in 2012, I have been following media platforms where many cyborgs or “alien beings” claim to be from the future, opening their own channels and communicating with humans through video calls by means of “psychic” connections. I was very much intrigued by the authenticity and performativity of these human narratives of the future and doomsday warnings.

Due to the emergence of COVID-19 in 2020, remote transnational communication has become popular, through live-streaming and calls, we can still feel the images and sounds transmitted through the Internet. When the signal is unstable, as if in response to the environmental backlash created by humans ourselves, we are still able to take a glimpse of this bizarre virtual world when the transmission is not complete or when a computer error occurs. This has led me to wonder whether the messages that will be transmitted in the future will also need to be encapsulated and compressed. And how should such messages be interpreted?

So I re-coded the narratives from “the error signals of technology and physicality”, using the voices of digital channels claiming to be from the future as a playbook through various social media filters, distorted voices and imagery are juxtaposed and contrasted, creating a ripple in the contemporary post-internet era.

close button
Please use desktop to browse the exhibition.
start button
Please turn on the sound for a complete experience

Signals from the future - Betty Apple

Visual design: Charles Tsai