Kailum is critically obsessed with the Web and born-digital content. He is particularly interested in image-rich technologies and the way global media communication—a landscape controlled by a handful of multidimensional oligopolistic corporate-run networks—can be sampled, organised, and considered in new philosophical, sociological, and political terms. Nonetheless, while these issues are political and economic in nature, Kailum believes anti-capitalist art offers no real alternative to the economic and ideological discourses of multinational capitalism. In its place, he is interested in examining the politics of the image and the construction of truth. To do this, he uses the Internet, which has normalised the act of collecting and compiling information, to preserve and curate found images and raw material. The aim is to engage with the cultural space and aesthetics of the Internet—and the vast amount of digital information it contains—as a subject, material, and tool of artistic production.
To do this, Kailum investigates different media and photographic methods—from appropriation to pixel and data manipulation—to create still and moving image projects that reflect the influence of technology on the photographic medium and sit resolutely within the context of future movements of contemporary photography. One of the most convincing aspects of his approach is the way he urges the viewer to evolve from a condition of mere spectatorship to a position where they must actively reflect on the various roles of technology in our media-driven age. However, rather than openly expressing socio-political criticism, Kailum takes a gentler ‘hint-at-the-direction’ path which invites the viewer to a process of reflection. On the surface his work might seem easy to read, but on closer inspection a viewer will find that he draws up a myriad of artistic, philosophical, scientific, theoretical, and cross-disciplinary approaches to achieve his highly refined poetic ends.
Kailum’s research delicately exists in a space between photography, Internet art, algorithmic art, and digital performance. He uses a laptop the same way a photographer uses a camera to document, record, and manipulate the world—which for Kailum is born-digital artefacts—to explore the disappearance of clear boundaries between culture, environment, and technology. He is particularly interested in the way humans use technology to transform, manipulate, and transcend natural environmental limits. There isn’t a one-way correlation; instead, a culture develops a technology, such as agriculture, to change the environment, and this technology, in turn, changes the culture and society that created it. Kailum explores this closed loop by creating large-scale still and moving images that play with the ubiquitous dichotomies between physical and digital existence.