Work published in: https://dl.acm.org/doi/abs/10.1145/3483529.3483779
Me, Myself and I in Dystopia is part of the larger project in progress called “Humanity: From Dystopia to Survival.” Originally, this project was conceived as an interactive survival game combined with an interactive audio-visual performance. During the pandemic lockdown, this project naturally evolved into a different version due to not being able to engage audience members in a real face-to-face context. While the original version and concept of this intermedia performance/interactive survival game is still a work in progress, the alternate version was created and called “Me, Myself and I in Dystopia.” This work demonstrates how the covid-19 outbreak has shifted the climate of collectivity to individuality and depicts what it means to be isolated in a dystopian society through my documentation of my survival and coping processes. In this video demonstration, I took twenty-five snapshots of my own facial expressions. The video documents the progression of the self in various stages; distraction, agony, anxiety, and depression, and borderline breakdown/struggles to survive. Imagining the scenario of being the only one surviving in a dystopia, this video hauntingly narrates isolation, fear, agony, and anxiety. After taking individual snapshots of my face, I spoke random words into the microphone and also engaged in slow breathing techniques as a gesture of meditation during the crisis. When I randomly make a sound, the image of my face blurs. Many of these actions are more than mere visual effect since they bear a symbolic meaning. The gradual blurring of the images is meant to convey the letting-go of previous thoughts, ideologies, and views of the past. As an individual adapts to a new, solemn reality, the previous representation of the self is dismantled and disoriented. Towards the end of the video, a new sense of individuality and sovereignty is born, accompanied by the urgency and the courage to face today’s chaotic and dystopian reality. While the overall synopsis is narrated in an abstract way, analogous to the genre of experimental video, this work represents intermedia art by combining action photography with interactive sound art and performance art via digital interface.
Electronic Literature Organization and Media Art Festival, May 24-28 (2021)
ARTECH 2021: 10th International Conference on Digital and Interactive Arts, Oct 13-15, Aveiro, Portugal