12 Stabs (21 min) is a 3D film built out of algorithmic responses by Marc Downie and Paul Kaiser to sub-areas of twelve randomly selected shots from a well-known science fiction film.
The film takes as a point of departure the way a robot sees with computer vision. It detects edges, colors, and motions, but it can’t tell figure from ground, actor from set, or action from camera movement.
In addition, we added a further source of confusion, allowing the computer to hallucinate depth as it tries to configure a virtual body out of the movement it sees on the screen.
For each shot, the film presents a few of the many trial replications attempted — with phantasmagoric results far truer to what replicant vision might really be like than anything Hollywood could conceive.
12 Stabs grew out of our 3D installation Becoming (2013). Partial support was provided by The Arts Council, UK and The Wellcome Collection, with special thanks to Wayne McGregor.