Chromakey is made in collaboration with my mother. We took the Covid-19 lockdown as an opportunity to simulate travel to my mother’s dream destinations, which in turn took me down a rabbit hole of musings. The images are a response to the present environment and technology, and an exploration of the architecture of the internet today.
Industry, connectivity and media have turned places into these hyperreal objects of desire into ‘destinations’. This is the same industry that turns experience into commodities, and portraits into performances to be communicated via social media. Jean Baudrillard in Simulacra & Simulation speaks of simulation and the hyperreal , saying that where reality was once the model or reference for creating simulations, now it’s the simulations that influence the way reality is shaped. It is becoming increasingly harder to tell apart reality from simulation, or if there is a difference at all.
The images are made by loading a google street view image as Zoom's virtual background on a Microsoft SurfacePro laptop . I was documenting my mother's routine around the house while merging it live into the street view images through a Zoom call, the screenshot command acting as the shutter and the computer's camera as the lens.
The broken simulations & distorted satellite images create a tear in the fabric, facilitating collisions in time and deterritorialized experience. It is on one level a performance and on another level a documentation, both of our predicament and of our present stage of technology.
This work was supported by India Foundation for the Arts in 2021 as part of their 25 x 25 grant.
The research and subsequent travel to Japan with my mother is envisioned as a book under the guidance of Yumi Goto & Kenji Chigaa during a workshop at JIPFest Jakarta 2022.
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