Bitte aktualisieren Sie Ihren Browser zur korrekten Anzeige dieser Webseite.

OFF (Observation Failure Filter)

A visual toolbox to escape facial recognition software on the web.

Reliable face recognition only requires a 100x100px section from a digital image. You will be recognised on all your posts which means you enable your own surveillance. You are not posting any pictures of yourself on the internet? Even just walking down the street you will not go unrecognised, because cameras are everywhere. Equipped with Artificial Intelligence they will record and store your biometric traces. The present work provides a tool with which you can escape surveillance in the area of face recognition. It is up to you to what extent you want to use it. The visual language developed has the potential to become a trend and offers an incentive for individualisation and self-development.


The work OFF started during an exchange semester in Hangzhou, China. At that time, the social credits system was introduced and cameras were installed everywhere. Meret Fischli received information about the establishment of the new surveillance element from her relatives in Switzerland. Discussions with fellow Chinese students about this tightening resulted in uncertainty and frustration: nobody seemed to worry about this situation. The playful approach on which the tool is based critically questions the events in China.

The project convinces through its playful approach and technically sophisticated realisation of this highly charged subject. It provides a subversive treatment of socio-political developments without taking a moralising stance. Both the application itself and the accompanying publication are fascinating in equal measure.

Overview Filter. © Meret Fischli. ZHdK.
Website Archive. © Meret Fischli. ZHdK.