Alex Langstaff

  • books November 03, 2020

    Flash Point

    Photography and Belief by David Levi Strauss. David Zwirner Books, 2020. 96 pages.

    ON APRIL 17, 2018, a video is released by BuzzFeed of Barack Obama, sitting comfortably in the Oval Office. He turns to the camera and tells us that Donald Trump “is a total and complete dipshit.” The form of this video, if not its content, seems plausible. It is, of course, a “deepfake,” manufactured by comedian Jordan Peele using Adobe After Effects and FakeApp––generic software that employs neural networks and machine learning to generate convincing simulacra. The video isn’t all silly, though. Peele goes on to