I’ve never liked January. Even though I celebrate my birthday at the end of the month, January is the time of the year when reality comes crashing down after the festive season and everything seems a bit gloomy.
Which is why the folks behind First Fornight have been doing amazing work over the past few years to highlight mental health in Irish society through a dedicated arts Festival. This year I was invited to produced a street art piece for the festival which runs from Jan 2 – 12. The piece I made was about Facebook and our relationship with our ‘friends’ on social media.
In the early days of the internet we talked about how Web 2.0 was creating a ‘Global Village’. For most people access to information on the world wide web has dramatically changed how we interact. In the past decade I’ve seen the effects of overreliance on social media, I think maybe it’s turning us into, ‘Like’ zombies, ‘Retweet’ robots. More and more the need for cyber vailidation has pushed meaningiful dialogue into the background.
Among the clutered status upates, images of cute kittens and exclaimtions that there are, “x amount of sleeps till…” a single status by someone calling out for help can be lost. Even if seen, do we ‘like’ it and move on without checking in with them?
My piece is about a breakdown of Facebook. The ‘wall’ is broken and refusing to by tied to the generic status update, I’ve written by hand the lyric, “I am human and I need to be loved” taken from How Soon Is Now by The Smiths.
Photo Credits: Aidan Kelly
Check out the full line up of Street Artists involved in First Fornight at the ‘Street Art Blog’