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Shoot me if you can
by Taeyoon Choi in collaboration with I&P media art team

  System diagram: Shoot an image with cameraphone, then send it to shootmegame@gmail.com via MMS. The image is automatically forwarded to Flickr for participants to view.
Creative Commons License

Taeyoon Choi
52-4 Anguk Dong
Seoul 110 – 240
South Korea

Shoot me if you can
is an urban game inspired by first person shooting online games. Replace gun with fun, and shoot the opposing team with a camera phone. Participants are given team color and phone number printed on a large sticker to put on their torso. If successful in taking a picture of the other team member, send the picture to the Flickr Moblog site, via simple MMS (Multimedia Messaging System) for it to count as a score.

Near ubiquitous network situation in Seoul and popular use of camera phone makes this project possible for a large number of players and possibly the general public present at the game site, as a form of flash mob. Players are virtually connected with each other and to the system, via mobile phone, while their physical body is present in a real space. Away from the conventional use of mobile phone as a two way communication, this project transforms the phone into a liminal object of the game with a metaphor of violent armor. Participants run and hide, doing best to avoid being photographed. Shoot me if you can grants a reason to run around taking pictures of strangers; opposing team members. It is an artistic approach on counter attacking candid and surveillance camera. Opposing team member is like a surveillance camera that walks and thinks.

Public participants enjoying the game
Creative Commons License
Shoot me if you can is a commentary on the ubiquity of camera phone and overflow of digital image in our culture, especially those of Korea whose mobile phone penetration rate is approaching 80%. The game takes the dynamic relationship between photographer and subject and twists it with a joyful performance. Situated in such crowd-clad locations in Seoul as ‘Myung Dong’ area, Shoot me if you can also reveals Korean youngsters’ paranoiac desire to photograph and the violence of surveillance camera in city life. This work attempts to interpret urban data through a public performance. It is also a research into psycho geographic practice and unitary urbanism of Situationist International, with the help of new mobile technology.

Online text in Korean and English, illustrations, HTML, link to Flickr moblog (http://www.flickr.com/photos/shootmegame)


Artist Biography

Taeyoon Choi
Taeyoon Choi creates performance and media projects using the human body in relation with moving image, site, and time. He presented a series of controversial happenings about culture and violence in both public and gallery settings with the team Jangseung, a multinational artist group formed in Chicago. His travel-diary video series in 2002 - 2004, Express to nowhere, is about foreign countries seen through the eyes of a cultural tourist.

His recent experimentations with locative media and wearable computer deal with the issues of locality and object of desire. Collaboratively with Interactive & Practice (a team of artists, engineers and researchers from other disciplines) at the Art center Nabi, he developed an urban game using the camera phone; Shoot me if you can and psychogeographic experiment; Sell your morning walk. In Shoot me if you can participants are required to take a photo of an opposing team member and send it to the gamer server via MMS. It is inspired by first person shooting games and possible violent use of surveillance cameras. His most recent performance, Object of desire, was about camera phone users as everyday tourists and their desire to photograph using wearable computer system with multiple webcams triggered by heartbeats. Human perception of space, cognitive mapping, and global issues are inspiration for locative media projects.

Choi and the team Jangseung is currently working on a new project: Movable Types and Instant Spaces, a wearable architecture project inspired by movable structures in the Korean urban area. The project will be exhibited at the Container Culture exhibit in ISEA 2006 San Jose.

Choi has a B.F.A in Performance at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. He is currently researching as a M.S student in Culture Technology at the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology. He is awarded as a 2006 artist in residence at the Art Center Nabi. He currently lives and works in Seoul, Korea.

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