Sean Chamberlain Intermedia Thesis Fall 2019

democratization of celebrity

the democratization of celebrity is a mutable installation. Formally, the democratization of celebrity is comprised of three performances, a clothing rack, wiring, red lighting, a power tower, and a fog machine. All of these objects operate together and autonomously, even as they lend their energy and support to the performance works, setting the stage for the performances to continue on a loop of production. This form of production is via the avatar, a vessel of transcendence and transference. Using the avatar as a means of creating a boundary between a central body and audience through that of the simulated or malleable. The artificial space releasing the confines of my central body, facilitating the ability to chameleonize, shift, edit, and morph. A new body, a new mind, an update, a reboot. The body, simulated or not, being used as material from which a varied matrix may emerge. The objects, as a collection, illustrate a sketch of locale, in varying forms of completion and detection. A nightclub, a stage, a retail environment, playing the characters of each of these spaces loosely and with ease. Through their continued mimicry, a performance of space, character, identity, and time move as one unit. A matrix of my own making, attempting to exist on the rim of worlds. 

Conceptually, the democratization of celebrity is investigating the production of a second self/avatar and the performative nature of the queer experience, sans Judith Butler. Sifitng through the vast archive of mostly white, cis academics and coming up confused/empty handed. Seeking solace in the transhumanist fields, creating parallels between the biohacking of CRISPR kids and estrogen/testosterone shots of the girls and boys, women and men, and all those in between. Examining the newly emergent trans-humanist field of exploring gender as a construct through which gender can be augmented via the digital and the cerebral, not requiring mechanisms of the trans-medical industrial complex. Framing the term avatar as a means of performing identity through a subsidiary of the central self. The prosthetic, an agent of believability used to propagate and aide the succeeding of the performance. The history of performance is varied, chipped, and ephemeral. In an attempt to circumvent a less tangible field of practice, this work opts to capitalized on the slipperiness of the tongue. Words as a prosthetic to carve out space for the goo to fall and maintain it’s grounding. Building out a new matrix to house intention and rewiring to view material as a fluid entity that may ebb and flow into different formal arenas. 

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