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Last updated at 14:37 GMT, Monday, 17 January 2011

Artist has camera implanted into his scalp


31 December 2010

Many teachers would probably want to have eyes in the back of their head to watch their pupils. A New York-based artist has done just that. Wafaa Bilal had a tiny camera implanted into the back of his head, which will then send photographs to a museum in Qatar.

Stephanie Hancock

Wafaa Bilal

The camera will be switched on 24 hours a day


Click to hear the report:


To have the camera installed in the back of his head, Iraqi-born Wafaa Bilal had to undergo a painful surgical procedure to tuck the camera firmly under his scalp.

The camera is at least small - just the size of a thumbnail and less than an inch thick - but it will be switched on 24 hours a day for an entire year.

The camera will take a photograph every single minute, digitally capturing every aspect of Wafaa Bilal's life.

The images will then be beamed from New York, where the artist lives, to the Middle East, where the photographs will be displayed at Qatar's new Arab Museum of Modern Art.

The artist says the project will raise important social, political and artistic questions, and has vowed to go about his daily life as normal.

But he admits some things, like sleeping for example, will be a bit tricky.

He now has to sleep sitting upright, and cannot use a pillow.

There's also the question of privacy.

Wafaa Bilal says dinner party invitations have already started drying up.

Stephanie Hancock, BBC News


Click to hear the vocabulary:


surgical procedure

medical operation


put something into a convenient place

an inch thick

a depth equivalent to about 2.54 centimetres


sent out a radio or electrical signal





to go about his daily life

to continue his daily life



sitting upright

sitting straight, on the vertical

drying up

are becoming rare

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