The Capability, 2017 by Anna Sinclair

image of The Capability 2017 by Anna Sinclair

Artist's statement

In October 2017, the Council of Australian Governments established ‘The Capability’, a system allowing law enforcement agencies to identify a person in real-time by searching passport and driver’s licence photos. It uses facial recognition technology to create a ‘face print’, then matches it with photos accessible through the system. Use of The Capability is currently limited to identifying people who are suspects/victims of terrorism or serious criminal activity. However, the creation of a national system of images, with powerful search algorithms – and the potential deployment of these technologies in public spaces – transforms the conception and application of digital portraiture, and raises concerns about how this technology may be used in the future.