Captas [intervention]

Fabio FON and Soraya Braz · Mobile-urban intervention · 2009

Yellow raincoats start chattering when they notice the use of cell phones, in transit through the city. A provocative mobile-urban intervention to think about the social implications of emerging technologies.

Image credits: Natal: Leandro Garcia, Igor Lucena, Gabriella Rebouças, Victor Hugo Rocha Silva, Soraya Braz and Fabio FON; São Paulo: Fabio FON, Soraya Braz and SESC-SP; Brasília: Fabio FON e Soraya Braz; São Carlos: Soraya Braz, Fabio FON and NOMADS-USP.

Captas by Fabio FON and Soraya Braz was an urban intervention in which striking yellow raincoats start chattering loudly when they realize the use of cell phones, in transit through the city. This action made use of performers and plastic raincoats consisting of a system capable of triggering disturbing pre-recorded cell phone conversations when they notice the use of a cell phone nearby, making sounds of intrusive conversations from other speakers in public places. The aim of the project is to discuss the social implications of mobile telephony in the urban space. The Captas Project is preceded by the artwork Grampo (2007). In Grampo (wire tap in English) , a panel made up of small chips capable of detecting the use of cell phones, also has a system capable of triggering pre-recorded conversations from intrusive speakers when the use of cell phones is detected nearby. Captas follows the same line, seeking to bring out the social dimension of the use of mobile telephony, the limits between public and private spaces, only this time, the proposal is loose in the urban space – the system and its performer searches for people speaking over the phone in order to realize your existential goal.

Captas had different characteristics over different experimentation versions: a first version was based on an Arduino controller board, an MP3 Player, audio outputs and a radio frequency sensor. In the initial version, the artwork counted on the collaboration of the artist duo Sergio Bonilha and Luciana Ohira in the programming of the hardware – an Arduino board – that manages the sound system. In its versions since 2010, the artwork started to rely on an electromagnetic radiation sensor exclusively developed for Captas, carried out by the graduates Jonas Damasceno and Artur Henrique from the Electrical Engineering degree at UFRN.

In 2009, Captas interventions took place in the city of Natal, Brazil, with the participation of Gabriella Rebouças, Igor Lucena and Leandro Garcia and also in the city of São Paulo, with the participation of Alexandre Mattos, Adriano Mattos and Diniz Gonçalves Jr. year, the project was presented at the Instituto Computacional Exhibition, at Galeria Espaço Piloto (UnB) and at the National Museum of the Republic, in Brasília and also at Mobilefest 2009 – Mobile Art and Creativity Festival, in November at the Museum of Image and Sound (MIS) in São Paulo. In addition, Captas was selected in the Edital Arte Tecnológica 2009 of the Research Support Foundation of the State of Rio Grande do Norte (FAPERN).

The last appearance of Captas takes place in October 2011 as part of the Hybrid Territories project organized by NOMADS.USP, in São Carlos, Brazil, with the performance of Prof. Dr. Marcelo Tramontano and the group Teatro no Teatro .

Read more about Captas: ‘CAPTAS: an urban-mobile artistic intervention in Brazil’

Automatic translation of the original page in Portuguese.