All posts tagged: Jules Spinatsch

A secret surveillance project of the Vienna Opera Ball

The Vienna State Opera House has a state-of-the-art camera surveillance system. In 2009, for the Vienna Opera Ball, they ceded control of that system to Jules Spinatsch. By repurposing a photographic network designed primarily for security purposes, the Swiss photographer created “a portrait of high society, of the ruling class enjoying itself, in a way unseen anywhere else,” he says. On the evening of the ball, Spinatsch climbed into his hired tux, paid the entrance fee of €250, and mingled with the crowd – “half of the Austrian government, all the big names in business, a few celebrities.” He took control of two suspended interactive digital cameras from the centre of the Opera House’s domed roof and had programmed each to cover, in two full rotations and in tiny increments, the entire interior of the Opera House, a grand neo-Renaissance building first built in 1869 and still, today, a byword for European high society at play. They began recording at 8.32pm and took a picture every three seconds until the ball’s denouement at 5.10am. The …


BJP Staff