Landscape with Live Stream

  • Mike Shum
ArtistMike Shum
MediumVideo (color, sound)
Duration06:30 min.
CreditCopyright Mike Shum Productions

Mike Shum’s film, Landscape with Live Stream, explores what it means to bear witness during this era of constant social media engagement. In the days following George Floyd's death, protests swept Minneapolis, culminating in the evacuation and burning of the Minneapolis Police Department's Third Precinct headquarters. Mike filmed these events as they unfolded, and dozens of others livestreamed the protests, allowing an international audience to watch what was happening in real time through platforms like Facebook Live, Twitter, and other social networking sites.

Mike’s work examines the gaping disparity between witnessing traumatic events firsthand and watching the same events unfold on a mobile device. The important labor of seeing, experiencing, and recording historical events has typically belonged to artists and journalists, but with cameras in every pocket and social media a click away, access to that experience is now quite broad. Despite their level of separation, the viewers who consume social media and watch livestreams also bear witness to history and thus share accountability for our collective response to these events.