Keep alive the informations, when the Apocalypse is near.

Walter Piccolo
9 min readAug 19, 2018
A picture of the KeepAlive installation in Germany, taken from Aram Bartholl’s Flickr page

How would the world look like without the Internet?

How would life be without our favorite sources of informations, like Google, Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat? These questions are bewildering; and the answers are even more unsettling.

It is fair to say that technology (in its most recent “digital” manifestations) has shaped and is shaping the XXI century.

The new generations of kids handle tasks like using smartphones or controllers without the slightest effort. Our bills are delivered straight to our tablets, our letters are now emails, our parents and beloved from far far away have never been more close with FaceTime and Skype.

We learn, share and increase knowledge with Google, Wikipedia and Youtube. We scream and shout our opinions on Facebook and on our personal blogs. We allow strangers to peak into our lives with Instagram, Snapchat and Twitter. We store our family pictures, recipes, stories, notes, documents, passwords and secrets in something that we aren’t even allowed to see, the Cloud.

We trust and rely on a System that we worship as an everlasting and perfect source.

But what if this Golden Calf, brought to life with centuries of human knowledge and intelligence, is grounded to powder and stops to exists from dusk till dawn?

There was a moment in our history in which this eventuality was considered possibile: we are talking about the Millennium Bug. In the night between December, 31st and January, 1st of the new Century, for just a couple of briefs seconds technology had the chance to disappear forever. But, instead, it got up stronger than ever and changed our lives forever, and not always for the best.

Ask to Charlie Brooker and his writers of the BBC/Netflix serial “Black Mirror” what they think about the future. Whatever is our position in the conversation, only one thing is clear: if technology would disappear tomorrow, we would come back to the Stone Age immediatly.

And Aram Bartholl thought to take this sentence literaly.

Mr Bartholl is a conceptual artist from Berlin, and he is known for his cutting edge works, in which he usually examines the relationships between the digital…