'Trifot' – Prague, Czechia - Atlas Obscura


An Orwellian sculpture with eyeball cameras watches passersby. 


“Trifot” is a kinetic sculpture by Czech installation artist David Černý, who is known for his whimsical, provocative works like the babies crawling up Žižkov Tower and a bus doing push ups. This sculpture, installed outside the Czech Photo Centre gallery, offers a decidedly dark perspective on surveillance and privacy.

The 40-foot-tall statue is modeled on vintage cameras with eyeballs in place of lenses. The bulging eyes swivel about independently, watching passersby, who might be shocked to find themselves broadcast onto one of six monitors in the area. 

Černý’s sculpture references the dystopian future of unchecked government surveillance in George Orwell’s 1984 and the terrifying alien technology in H.G. Wells’ The War of the Worlds. According to the artist though, it’s also meant to honor the observational art of photography. Those who find themselves unwittingly filmed by Trifot might feel differently however.

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