Selfie (2018) examines our relationship with touchscreen devices through their capacity as surfaces for mark making. Touchscreens act as a mirror, reflecting us literally and metaphorically – capturing and responding to our likes and preferences. The usually unseen traces of fingerprints and smudges left behind record the intimate nature of this relationship. Selfie sits between an ‘objective’ record of the marks as captured by the process of fingerprint lifting, and the subjective mark making of the drawing. The candid, unflattering pose offers a ‘reality’ that is not typically recorded even though it is representative of the majority of our time spent in front of touchscreens. In this way, the perspective presented is both alien and uncomfortable due to its familiarity. It highlights the unspoken separation between the way we allow devices to capture us – when we use the camera to take a selfie for example – and the way that we actually interact with them. It also reveals the touchscreen as a site of mark making, and one which, despite its ubiquity, is largely overlooked.
Selfie was selected for inclusion in the Wells Art Contemporary exhibition 2019, Wells, UK.