Paintings: Failing Fallacy & Disassociated Synthetic Reality
by Beauchamp Art
Painting from a still of a corrupted/glitched pornographic Internet video.
The simulation one may choose to indulge in is as prone to failure and degradation as reality. The physicality of the individual’s satisfaction by electronic means is equal to that of the flesh in the mind; the chemical response, the release of dopamine and other such endorphins and hormones of pleasure do not discriminate between what has caused their activation, and the individual cannot distinguish between the ‘real’ and the ‘artificial’ affecter, only the self indulgent desire for a chemical response due to sexual stimulation is of concerned; the other persons are irrelevant, the ego is everything. One can only experience reality through the self; empathy is an attempt to bridge the gap between two persons’ emotional state, but is limited, fraudulent, and frequently descends into the vanity of pity. In this painting, I intended to represent an aspect of the potential for failings of human interaction and relationships, especially through and due to the influence of technology; what is enabled by online exchange and at what expense.
[In the song ‘Wollt ihr das Bett in Flammen sehen’ by the band Rammstein, musician Till Lindermann said “Sex ist ein Schlacht, liebe ist Krieg” (“Sex is a battle, love is war”) – Masturbation, by extension, is victorious suicide]
Jan van Dijk, ‘The Network Society’, said, “In terms of stimuli richness, no other medium is able to beat face-to-face communication. The reason is clear: all current new media are sensory poor. This is especially so for computer networks transmitting only lines of text and data. Multimedia offers a greater richness of stimuli, perhaps even an overload” (1999: 19)
This seemed fitting, as the ‘glitch’ is a demonstration of the inevitable failings of the technologies built by man, embodied with their failings; the sensory relationship one has through and with technology is just as problematic as attempting to decode this visual ambiguity, in order to provide oneself with a source of stimuli.
This does not mean that as such machines fail, they will be doomed, but rather developed* – or its problems accepted as part of it, for the sake of ease. Much as one may eat a take-away burger from a fast-food parlour, fully away of its nutritional value being minimal, and its flavour mostly being due to large amounts of salt and sugar, rather than a delicately balance cacophony of subtle delicatessens.
Moreover, when analysing the effects of the network society and the proliferation of new media into mass culture, van Dijk noted that “The most fundamental result of the universal presence of screens is undoubtedly the gradual replacement of a person’s direct personal experience and direct interaction by observation through glass and camera lenses, usually someone else’s, and by mediated interaction.” (1999: 181) Though commenting on the physical over-abundance of screens [monitors, televisions, the other ‘black mirrors’ – as Charlie Brooker describes them] I believe that the principal is true for the mass expansion of the visual content of the media on which they are presented. Direct interaction decays (in frequency and integrity) whilst the fallacy of artificial exchange may be more normal or regular than the physical/face-to-face communication.
In this piece, the supplementation of sexual interaction (rather than out-right substitution) is demonstrated, and shown as temperamental, flawed, failing.
*There is an interesting, and somewhat humorous article that was in the Guardian recently about a major affect of pornography and the demand for explicit material on the development of tele- and visual technologies, primarily revolving around the idea that porn has been an important driving force for the fast distribution of media. Rather directly, this article, by John Arlidge is entitled “The dirty secret that drives new technology: it’s porn”
(Jan A G M van Dijk, 1999. Network Society, Social Aspects of the New Media. SAGE Publications Ltd.)
Chalk, Charcoal, Oils on card
Painting from a still of a corrupted/glitched pornographic video, in which the three figures where broken and doubled with other random, uncontrolled and unintentional effects, here focusing on the central individual from the sexual act.
The two selves; not the conscious and the subconscious, the ego and the superego, the inner and the outer, but rather the physical and the digital, the real and the artificial, the flesh and the fiction; are here juxtaposed and highlighted by the fractured face of an anonymous individual.
Also used as a part of a photographic series – In Isolation – Digital Discord – [link]
In chalk is written ‘You make me feel so alone’