FREYA: What does Privacy Look Feel & Sound Like -Athina


Anthina Antoniaouis is calmly intense, holds a steady gaze and   drinks her vodka double, neat, poured over ice cubes.  She is a woman with depth, she has learned about life.  Listening intensely, she bears herself as someone who understands the seasons, the mountains, the seas, humanity and nature itself.  She is streetwise, perfectly at home in any urban setting finding her way effortlessly through winding alleys and high-rises.  Anthena is just plain cool in a chilled kind of a way.  And she produces exciting, thought provoking art. 

Originally from Nicosia in Cyprus, Anthena has brought her art as far north as beyond the Arctic Circle to the southern tip of Africa.  She also exhibits and studied in both North and South America.  In the North her studies followed the more conventional route at California College of Arts and Crafts, Oakland, for a BFA degree.  In South America she broke down boundaries and broadly expanded her mind by living and learning from Peruvian Shamans in the Amazonian jungle.

The filmed version of her presentation at the VOME Privacy Workshop for Artists captures some of Anthea’s essence, but not fully.  You need to meet her in real life.   This is an excellent example of ‘Real Life’ delivering the goods, versus viewing the digital version.  You cannot smell someone if they are on screen.
Poetically, everything has a dream in itself.  Humanly, everyone holds a dream within.   I wish I could be just like Anthea, a double, a carbon copy in 3D.  That would get rid of many an awkward moment, and also that red face thing.   In addition, I’m pretty sure that all the other unpleasant things, muddles, messes and disasters (which I’d rather not think too much about) in connection with my well-guarded Personal private life, would be solved – just like that.

In her presentation Anthina shares her thoughts, she challenges concepts and links to thought provoking quotes.  She opens with a definition of Privacy: ‘Separate from Rest / Deprived of Something’, and highlights that this is sourced from a Western Encyclopedia. 

Anthina then delves deeply, going from the minuteness of a Cell to the wholeness of the Universe.  Politics and Economics being key points in that we have no privacy – apart from our thoughts, and we tend to give them away for free on-line.  Basically, we have no privacy at all.  We have lost control of our exposure.   Things are out of control – control does not exist.  The world is in a big mess.  I am in a big mess.  Panic rules, I’m hyperventilating. Oh shit.

Which is why something needs to be done right now.  But what can I do?  I’m searching for answers, but I must do something, Anthea might know.  I’ll look at her quotes.

Albert Einstein:
‘You can not solve a problem with the same mind that created it.’
-Who then will be solving my problems?

Dr Valerie Hunt:
‘Thoughts are events in the mind-field that are available not only in the consciousness of its creator, but also to other minds.’  
-Our thoughts will be felt even more publically when we post them on Facebook or Twitter. 

Going public with a thought:
A pre-thought might start with feeling a private urge, the kind when there is a pull in your belly; you feel restless and need to get some energy out.  The private urge starts to formulate into a private thought.  The thought could be anything, like for instance:
 -I’d like to dress up as a Superhero and run into town, or
-Ride a horse along a beach wearing a white flowing dress
-Jump out of a plane with a parachute
-Cycle around the world in my underpants
-Go into town and do some rioting and looting 

If your next action is to publish your thought on a Social Network site, it will no longer be classified as a personal private thought.  It is out there, and there could be a consequence.  You may or may not start a ‘Real Life’ riot. 

By writing down these kinds of thoughts and sharing them on the net, you may be sent to jail, or to a young offenders institution.   (33 months for starting a riot in Nottingham, 48 months for not starting a riot in Cheshire).  The police monitor the sites we use to write our thoughts, dreams and chat to our friends and family on, since they are also used with criminal intent. 
Steven Hawkins:
‘In this interconnected universe, every improvement we make in our private world, improves the world at large for everyone.
This quote really calls for some action from us to self-improve our private world.

-Interestingly enough, many of the rioters may not have been feeling bad in the first place, but were nevertheless seeking to improve their lot and feel better in some way.   Methods included acquiring new sportswear / technical goods / getting agro out / to feel invincible / take over the world / be top dog or taste some coffee ice cream* at Patisserie Valerie (*18 months). 

Most of those themes can be downloaded as computers games and the action then would normally take place on screen.  It feels different in real life.

It would be good if we could gain self-improvement by just relaxing a bit more and going with the chill:  happiness / flower filled fields / a good book / free love – and all that.  Nobody getting too worried / in a state / needing to know what everybody else is doing.  Society would be less uptight.

With this in mind, it’s nearly a shame to be reminded of those things called ethics, values and codes to live by. These are the themes that the world’s religions have been trying to explain to us for thousands of years.    Anthea names her top key values as: ‘Respect, Compassion and Understanding for each other’.   These are good values, they are ‘pro’ and ‘for’.    Actions and values such as: ‘Invading others’ Personal space / Envy / Greed for others’ belongings / Harming / Delving out punishments ’ – would normally be classified as ‘ being against’ and on the opposite end of the Axis’ of Polarity.

When police scrutinize the 40 000 hours of riot CCTV from the 1.85 million CCTV public cameras and 1.7 million privately owned cameras, 115 000 public transport cameras and 33 433 council owned cameras, they won’t find me.  I was in France.

It’s complicated.  Most of us are both ‘for’ and ‘against’, there are not many completely ‘for’ people.  I don’t know if they exist.  Apart from possibly Gandhi, who must have been a  ‘for’ person, and also St Lucia – who had her eyes gauged out.  Maybe we all need to become Saints, Holy people, Off-our-heads Happy Hippy’s, or Communists, or play Cricket.   But this may still not work.

We need to somehow simplify it further.   It all feels like much, too big a thing to deal with. 

OK, the thing to do is to go back to ‘the Cell’.
We will go back to the concept that ‘Each of us are a Cell and that we are all a part of the Whole’.

It’s quite a thought, to think of myself as being a Cell.
-Me, Freya, I am a Cell. 
-Me, i.e. the Cell, am an organism – within the greater thing, called the Earth.  Wow.
-And I play an important part for everything to function well.  The private me is a part of the whole. 
-If am ‘for’ and ‘pro’ the world, and if I truly work on: ‘Respecting, Understanding and Compassion’ (and not just pretend that I’m doing so) – things may work out well.  I could also bless people in a friendly manner.

You can do this too. 
With just a little effort we can all do it.


Next time I’ll write about the final presentation at the VOME Privacy workshop for artists with Lucinka

By the way, I’ve now read some interesting facts about Cells:
Apparently there is no such thing as a ‘Typical Cell’. Each cell has its own uniqueness.  There are no cells that are exactly the same as each other.  There are different types, and they all do different things.  Some cell types are sensitive to stimuli.    Some cells attract, then release.  Others secrete, and some even engulf other cells.   There are cells that spend their time manufacturing.   There are those that are able to destroy other cells.  They are able to do this, and therefore they do it.  It’s like that.