Used Webcam Cover Archive (2019-2022)

Jason Lazarus

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2022, open edition print
In 2019, Jason Lazarus began an archive of used webcam covers–often ad hoc bits of tape, sticky notes, and other everyday materials that people use to cover up the camera on their laptops or other devices. He sees these webcam covers as “the world’s smallest protest signs, among other things.”

"According to Lazarus, since at least 2016, Mark Zuckerberg, co-founder of Facebook and CEO of Meta Platforms, covers his personal laptop webcam with a piece of tape. Former director of the FBI James Comey Jr. is on record as covering the camera on his laptop as well. With such important figures in the worlds of information gathering and surveillance showing apprehension about the security of such devices in our personal spaces staring at us, the artist was moved to reconsider our relationship with the webcam. Lazarus suggests that technology “seems to offer an initial democratizing possibility for expression and exchange” until the corporate logic and state surveillance inflects its usage. For the exhibition Metadata: Rethinking Photography from the 21st Century at the Ringling Museum of Art (Sarasota, FL), the artist has created not only the first large-scale, framed, photographic print of the growing archive, but in addition, a 40” tall, open edition, offset lithograph print for wide distribution."
(Christopher Jones, Curator, Ringling Museum of Art, 2022)
More on the archive at:
Dimensions: 27.5 x 40"
Materials: Offset lithograph print

Jason Lazarus
(Chicago & Tampa)

Jason Lazarus is an artist exploring vision and visibility. His work includes a range of fluid methodologies that seek new approaches of inquiry, embodiment, and bearing witness through both individual and collective research. Currently, Lazarus is an Assistant Professor of Art and Art History at the University of South Florida, he is also Co-director of Coco Hunday, an artist-run exhibition space in Tampa, FL; Director, PDF-OBJECTS; Cofounder of #firstdayfirstimage; and Co-founder of Chicago Artist Writers. He has shown internationally, including with SF MOMA, Art Institute of Chicago, MASS MoCA, and MCA Chicago.