Artboom, 1999-2013
Wristwatch camera, custom software, touchscreen computer, Internet

The ArtBoom is a fusion of net art and performance. Acknowledged as one of the first social networks on the Internet, it was initiated in 1999 when Merhi obtained the prototype of the first microcomputer-wristwatch-camera. Since then, Yucef has been using this peculiar wristwatch to take pictures and classify all the people that he have been meeting who are directly involved to the art world, such as artists, curators, gallery directors, collectors, journalists, art historians, art students, etc.

After 14 years (1999-2013) of mapping the art world in cities like Caracas, New York, Los Angeles, Miami, Paris, London, Amsterdam, Madrid, and Istanbul, among others, Merhi found himself developing something that is many things. The ArtBoom is an Internet Art project, a social network, a cultural search engine, a database, an on-going performance, and a tracking device. Moreover, it is an interactive archive of our contemporary art history.

The ArtBoom is ubiquitous. It has no time-space constraints. Its making process can take place in New York or in New Delhi. It can be viewed in South Africa or South America, in a home computer or a museum exhibit.

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