From 1925 to 1931, Alfred Stieglitz produced a series of photographs titled, Equivalents. Stieglitz photographed clouds utilising an abstract aesthetic which focused not on the depiction of the real or material world, but rather a pursuit of the “inner spirit in outer things”. In today’s digital society, the term “cloud" has taken on a somewhat different meaning, referring to the vast network of data centres which host information on the internet. In the early 20th Century Stieglitz was referencing a sense of equivalence between the unfathomable aura and abstractions of nature, with our own inner state. In the early 21st Century this new “cloud” entity has become so much a part of our everyday lives, it has become inseparable from our sociological experience. Much like Marshall McLuhan’s writings on modern media in the 1950’s, it can now be argued that we experience digital information as a sort of extension to our own central nervous system.
The following images have been harvested from online search results and depict various network systems and data centres from undisclosed locations. This series of modern “clouds”, I have also titled, Equivalents.