In information technology, “lossy” compression is a data encoding method that compresses data by discarding (losing) some of it. The procedure aims to minimize the amount of data that needs to be held, handled, and/or transmitted by a computer…Typically, a substantial amount of data can be discarded before the result is sufficiently degraded to be noticed by the user.
— Stephanie Syjuco

Below: video from Breath

Breath is an exploration in the process of “lossy compression.” I am fascinated by the way we construct the systems around us to mimic what we feel is natural. We mirror our language of biological functions to relate to the machines that surround us.  Memory is one facet of that discussion that intrigues me. Much like “lossy” compression, our physical memories may simply discard data, but keep the integrity of the whole. Therefore, they are like the files stored on our hard drives, susceptible to alteration, overwriting, or even retrieval failure.

When we ask the computer to store data, and leave space for the many other things we might need, ultimately we are asking a computer program to destroy the “unimportant” data, in order to keep only what is best. Can we sincerely ask our machines to be ethical for us, to choose what goes and what stays? Similarly, can we ask that of ourselves? Do we have accurate truths or are we simply just holding on to the best data? With every inhale and exhale, the frames begin to lose data, but the breathing continues. Each breath is another iteration towards what may be the computer’s ideal of perfection.