Communications technology has, in the past several decades, both created and revealed a vast expanse of uncharted territory. This land is made not of physical things, but the connections and dynamic interactions between them. There's much mystery, wonder, and treasure to be found in exploring this world of complex systems and networks, but there's also cause for concern. Just as cartographic expeditions paved the way for colonization in the Age of Discovery, today’s charting and mining of the new world is already constituting us as subjects of regimes old and new. Today, the precise geographical movements of the vast majority of people worldwide are readily available to governments and private information brokers.
As scientists start to map this strange territory of complex relationships, I'm interested in developing new ways to experience, reframe, and transform it, especially in the curious places where uncertainty is the rule. My love for adventure and exploration of unfamiliar places has led me to approach the world of systems and social space by creating metaphorical connections in geographic and urban space. What I find most exciting is discovering or even fabricating those points of contact where analogy slips into literality, where the two worlds unexpectedly intersect. In these moments, complex systems can become legible at the scale of felt experience.
My projects all begin as clearly articulable propositions, yet never remain just that. In realizing a proposition, I listen for opportunities afforded by chance, the unforeseen, lessons learned along the way, and failure. Through execution, ideas gain weight and fullness; concept becomes personal, intimate, and resonant.
David Rueter is currently an MFA candidate in Art and Technology Studies at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. His work has been exhibited at galleries and festivals across the US, including ISEA and Northern Spark. Born in Ann Arbor, MI, he graduated from Oberlin College with a BA in Politics and a focus in Political Theory. Before attending SAIC, David worked for 10 years as a software engineer, designing and implementing tools for processing and transforming large sets of data.