2 August – 13 September 2008
Centre for Contemporary Arts, Glasgow
Eggs, toast and disco are everything you need to get the day started. From the daily activities of egg-laying in the Gorgie City Farm in Edinburgh to a mechanical toaster at the Centre of Contemporary Arts in Glasglow, the World Wide Wegg relays the biological production of the rural to the commonplace production of toast in the urban.
Through the vast communication portal known as the Internet, each egg layed in realtime at the farm triggers a toaster to produce a piece of toast for visitors at the gallery. An upbeat iTunes playlist controlled by the chickens is used to help jump start the day. With a cheeky pun referencing booty dancing Jason Forrest’s label, each peck from the chickens skips a song on a playlist from Cock Rock Disco. The sound produced is more unlistenable than dance-inducing as each song plays for no longer than a second before skipping to the next. The sound, however, is said to inspire the idea of the ‘perpetual fluttering of chickens’.
To complete the production, a lottery ticket can be purchased online resembling that of a old slot machine. With the use of simple computation, 6 random numbers are generated by the egg-laying activities of the chickens. Adding even more to the slight randomness of eggs, toast, chickens and Cock Rock Disco, the lottery completes the whole production by including a token for revenue. The lottery is a game that further engages the chickens who have no awareness of the tracking and unusual production of their actions. With a brightly coloured pixel website, and low-res web cam captures of the chickens in action, the World Wide Wegg is well packaged complete with low-fi aesthetics, pop cultural references and play-on-words.
The World Wide Wegg is a project that admires values of simplicity. Not only in with the use of simple one-way action-response communication, but also in the admiration of simple daily modern actions or processes (i.e. producing a toast or skipping a song on iTunes), as well as, the basic habitual activities of the networked chickens (i.e. egg-laying and pecking). Together these urban and rural actions and productions are linked together as symbols of the archetypal breakfast for the playful application of modern technology.
The World Wide Wegg is a quirky project that utilizes the frenetic activities chickens to create a rather unusual breakfast experience. It is a simple gesture that enlivens interactions between a world of chickens and the stark white walls of a contemporary art space.
The World Wide Wegg is presented as part of ALT-W an exhibition exploring New Directions in Scottish Digital Culture by artists supported by the Alt-W Fund on until 13 September.