QUT, Australia

Eily Shaddock

DIGIENTITY

DIGIDENTITY aims to explore the link between the rise of psychological and behavioural issues amongst young people and the highly addictive, influential nature of social media applications, with a particular focus on Instagram. The proliferation of technology and subsequent rise of social media has transformed communications over the past decade, however it is only now that the effects of this technological saturation have begun to surface. Not only are our devices physically tethered to us, but online platforms have begun to hold their users psychologically captive. More than ever, social media operates as a paradigm of (dis)approval as users are allowed, and indeed encouraged, to perfectly construct and manipulate the information disseminated about them through the publication of photos, comments and profiles. This construction not only responds to, but also feeds into a person’s desire for social and character validation. Likewise, our dressed identity and our personal style has been transformed into a process of ‘becoming’ rather than ‘being’, where identity play and fashion co-exist. As technology evolves, our online profiles and platforms act like diary entries and have arguably become instrumental to the process of identity construction for young users of the twenty first century. DIGIDENTITY highlights incongruent user behaviour both on and offline and explores the idea of the ‘true’ and ‘false’ self through juxtaposing silhouettes and contrasting textures, paired with highly distorted, custom digital prints and texturally-driven layered fabric manipulations. Extreme graphics have been used throughout, including morphed ‘Instagram feed’ inspired prints, custom static and ‘standby’ screen textures, hand-embroided 3D faces, laser cut mirror acrylic (which is used to replicate a broken iPhone screen) holographic fabrications and manipulations and custom pop signage that sends a not-so-subtle message to audiences. DIGIDENTITY aims to hold a mirror up to current times and reflect back our flawed society.