Bare Life
short film, HD, color, stereo, 16'28'', 2021

Bare Life depicts a loosely structured, contested concept of freedom tied to various cases and agents: killing and being killed, machines recognizing pain, and the complex ecosystem of empathy that occurs in response.

The film investigates three cases in parallel (the order of cases is not sequential). Case 1 shows archival footage of a pest controller specializing in eliminating wild rats with an air gun. Case 2 introduces an interlocutor whose face is covered, sharing personal stories about her idea of freedom and being “inside and outside.” Case 3 describes an experiment from Animal Welfare Laboratory. The project uses deep learning (artificial intelligence) systems to analyze facial expression data of laboratory mice, before and after anesthesia/surgery, suggesting a tool for recognizing the suffering and pain of mice.

Funded by︎︎︎
Seoul Foundation for Arts and Culture, Seoul Metropolitan Government
Society for informatics(GI), German Federal Ministry of Education and Research

Supported by︎︎︎
Air Rifle Pest Control, UK

Research inspired by︎︎︎
Freie Universität Berlin, Institute of Animal Welfare, Animal Behavior and Laboratory Animal Science

Andresen N, Wo ̈llhaf M, Hohlbaum K, Lewejohann L, Hellwich O, Tho ̈ne-Reineke C, et al. (2020) Towards a fully automated surveillance of well-being status in laboratory mice using deep learning: Starting with facial expression analysis. PLoS ONE 15(4): e0228059. © 2020 Andresen et al. / Mouse Lock Box, Science of intelligence / Mouse Grimace Scale (MGS): The Manual / Langford DJ, Bailey AL, Chanda ML et al. (2010). Coding of facial expressions of pain in the laboratory mouse. Nature Methods 7(6): 447-449. / Map data ©2020 Google

Bare Life, still, 2021

BareLife 2021·Trailer, 65''

︎Critical Essay

“ Bare Life, or Others Who Could Never Become Others ”

︎︎︎Yi Jinkyung (EN), Translation: Minji Chun