Identity dissolved in the gaze of social media algorithms strains our understanding of ourselves to the breaking point. How do we deal with a situation where the image of our own body, personal style, creativity or political orientation becomes a data item in the database of a multinational company?
This talk will present different contexts of what Obrist, Basar and Coupland call the “extreme self”. Replicated formulas of TikTok influencerism meet role-playing in VRChat, contemporary art, queer liberation and the crisis of masculinity filtered by dietary supplements.
In a follow-up workshop, we will then try to build together a sensitivity to the forces undermining and bridging our selves and especially our ideas of ourselves as sovereign subjects. We are going to map together the capitalism of platforms, reverse visuality, meme identification with the figure of the doll drawn in Painting, but also a journey underpinned by philosophies that see the human being as a constantly changing process instead of a fixed entity. “You reproduce yourself,” write Basar, Coupland and Obrist. Let us together invent tools by which we can freeze the reflections of ourselves, at least for a while, so that we can make sense of the hallucination around us.
Duration: 80–110 min.