Private Secrets Public Lies is a participatory installation and game where both present and remote users become active collaborators. Play the secrets game by following the link on the menu to the left below. The game asks users to consider how the translation of private data enabled by viral speed can change the context, meaning, and intent of the original message.



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about this project


This project created by artist Renate Ferro consists of two parts: a virtual segment, the Secret’s Game, and an analog segment, the Secret’s Box.  Both segments ask the user to consider how the translation of private and public information can change in form. In context, meaning, and intent via the ubiquity of mass media.

After entering the interface of the Secret's Game click on the type box and type a secret.  The text data is filtered and sorted via a java applet; the information is added to an archive. The words most frequently used float in larger circles than words used  less often. On the next three pages users drag and drop words to each of the three empty circles in the center of the screen creating a new word phrase. The newly recycled word phrase is fed into a server generating a list of current associated links. 

The Secret's Box is comprised of a wooden hinged box the inside surface of which is layered with newspaper reports.  Each of the accounts contains a historical reference to a national or international secret or lie.  A transparent plexi-glass cover is secured over the entire top of the box. Viewers are asked to write a secret on a piece of paper.  After writing each participant is asked to cut each word apart to deconstruct the content. The fragments are deposited into the box. At this moment the fragments of text filter into the box joining the archive of former participant’s secrets. The viewer is able to peer inside of the wooden box through the transparent cover but can only read at a distance the layered bits of information that have collected.

Follow the links on the left to play the game or access more information about the project.







News feed

today want happy

telephone turn golden

breakfast scared afraid

things stole finished

fake dropped anxious

vulva smoked magical

seeds tell toasted

secret generate uncomfortable

bestiality scared two

and want golden