The Virtuality Manifesto by Nedim Kufi
This series originated from my observation that all human beings wear proverbial masks. Behind their masks, they conceal intentions that are vary from one person to another. In the virtual self-image that a mask portrays, we seek some sort of psychological satisfaction.
Through the circumstances that it presents in the way of to trust and privacy, social media has given birth to the art of crafting alternative personalities, or simply put, virtuality.
As I researched this virtuality, I spent two years questioning a significant number tweeters. The aim of my inquiries was to arrive at a conclusion as to why they represented fabricated versions of themselves online. The outcome was, by and large, that they sought out mystery and concealment in landscape stripped of privacy. As such, social norms and expectations such as religiousness and decency and led them to adopt avatars that are completely removed from the way the represent themselves in real life.
As an artist, I found that all people possess a raw artistic energy through which they excel, albeit not knowingly.
In order to translate the tweeters’ messages into oil-on-canvas portraits, I experimented with several methods that included photography and art lines. But overall, what I delivered evolved into Pop Art.
Ultimately, what we’re dealing with is a virtual society, one that transcends tangible terms. It is almost as if the members of this society inhabited a whole other planet altogether. This is evident in the way they express themselves, their absurd strive for arrogant elegance, and their vulgarity.
In short, these individuals are in search of personal statements that justify their seeking comfort in a virtual space, namely the Twitter-verse. In this virtuality they seek out a voice and a set of criteria by which they operate.
Translated by Abdulah Al-Ghoul at Dar Al-Anda, All Rights Reserved