Article 13 of the European Copyright Directive which was confirmed in March 2019, imposes automatic censorship of any type of work protected by copyright on the Internet. It directly threatens all forms of remixes, gifs and other memes, and more generally freedom of expression and creativity.
Similar to the ‘bat signal’ projected in the sky of Gotham City, this flag must to be brandished when our ‘cyber-freedoms’ are threatened. A way to awaken the conscience and a call for the hackers to act.
This flag invokes the Hydra that stands on the Pirate Bay logo, symbol of resilience: this immortal mythological monster has several heads that double up when one of them is cuted. According to Peter Sunde, one of the founders of this controversial torrent site, the expression AFK (Away From Keyboard) would be more accurate that the initialism IRL (In Real Life), considering that Internet is part of the reality. In this context Apoc seemed perfectly designed to match the dragon heads and cyber aesthetic with its sharp, experimental and elegant approach.
Back to Keyboard is Countach studio’s contribution to Belvédère’s first exhibition. Belvédère’s goal is sets up a panoramic view of contemporary practices through cross-thematic exhibitions. In Au Loin Je Vois, eleven artists, graphic designers, photographers and designers question the materiality, the symbolism and the uses of the flag.