Google Searches

Turn your E-waste into something meaningful to you

by Chun Wang

Google search entries, as direct output from my brain speaking to the internet, approximate my train of thoughts and feelings better than anything else. Creating and watching a silent movie in which the script is entirely made up of my own Google search entries of this year is an out-of-world experience. The trips I planned, companies I wanted to work for, persons I was interested in, my concerns, my dreams. At one moment I feel ashamed of some of my searches, the next moment they make me proud because of where they lead.

Following my instructions you will be able to create your own Google Searches movie.

Screen control


Infected Instructions (Online, permanent)

In 2020 in the wake of COVID-19 pandemic, I created a variant of this project, which takes on the form of a piece of instruction, in the legacy of Fluxus in the 60’s:

Search Diary

Your internet search history is a recycling bin for traces of intellectual and emotional output from your brain. Turn this E-waste into something meaningful to you.

Visit your Google Search history online.

For each of the days after your life has changed, pick one entry that you like the most from your search history of the day, reflect on what triggered this particular search, and write down one concise sentence about why you like it. Compile into a unique diary.

Tip: use the date filter to help you navigate through your search entries.

Check it out in the Infected Instructions exhibition.

İz Dünyası: The Waste Land (İstanbul, Turkey, 2022)

In 2022 this project will be included the exhibition İz Dünyası: The Waste Land organized by Akbank Art and Open Dialogue İstanbul. 

Curator: Egenur Öztelli

We live step by step every day, leaving traces behind us that can be followed with each step we take. But at the end of the day, can we decipher our own tracks on the road we walked?

While billions of people live in the world, when our paths cross with other people, and when they are walking on the same roads we walk on, when we look back, which traces were left on our path by ourselves, which were left on our way by other people, and which ones have deepened and made it difficult to cross the road, we are at a point where we can no longer distinguish. The Waste Land has surrounded us, filled our minds, has become a part of our existence. How can we avoid this? How can we separate the waste from the trace, the trace from the waste? The starting point is awareness.

The poet Ezra Pound says about T.S Eliot's poem "The Waste Land", which is the inspiration of the İz Dünyası, "a certain fluid force against circumstance, conceiving instead of merely reflecting and observing” This power must be used against today's most pressing problem: the climate crisis.

As Oli Brown writes in his book "Migration and Climate Change", it is the case that 1 billion people will become "climate refugees" by 2050. This means that we encounter much more footprints on our roads than we anticipated.

The road is two-sided, one can go back, and go forward. When we go back at this point, the only thing we have in our power is to be aware; Ahead of the road is a new page. When the existence of human beings ends in the world, the paths and traces remain, and the fact that these traces are not "waste" depends on human beings.

İz Dünyası opens a passage to the past of "every human being", which focuses on the paths that the inhabitants have travelled, and focuses on the "physical", "psychological" and "digital" traces they leave along the way. It is time for reasoning to follow the projections of our paths we have crossed and left behind, and to save the paths we will walk in the future from becoming a waste land.

“I wanted an interactive work called Google Searches to be included in this exhibition, where I also think about digital traces. What we ask and write to Google has an invisible but natural side to our lives. As the artist said, it is a medium where our brain speaks one to one. At the end of this information transfer, where this data is used and what results it can produce is an area that we don't think much. "Google Searches" allows me to discover the "invisible" digital tracks side of my project, both as a direct reflection of our internet footprints and as a data output of what we thought in the past.”

- Egenur Öztelli