‘This Unjust Mirror’, by renowned conceptual artist Constant Dullart is available to see until February 2021
Translated by Thomas Ansell
With the opening of the exhibition relegated to an online event due to the ongoing Coronavirus pandemic, Constant Dullart marked the occasion by utilising new software that let visitors attend the exhibition and speak to eachother. “I wanted to do something as an opening, despite the current situation, and this is a nicer way to get people in touch with eachother”, he says. As reported by the Friesch Dagblad.
One part virtual tour is a film that will also be featured centrally at the exhibition, which opens with a poem written by Dullart after reading Oscar Wilde’s The Picture of Dorian Grey. “The main character [in the book] wants not to age, rather that his ageing is reflected in the deterioration of a portrait that he has. It got me thinking about how we reflect the present day in our social media profiles. We are always busy trying to make sure that the perfect version of ourself is shown- we only show the good things [in our life], for example our holiday photos”, says Dullart.
‘This Unjust Mirror’ is Dullart’s first solo-exhibition, and is a journey through the world of online propaganda, where fake news and phoney accounts are the order of the day. “The virtual tour is an introduction. In the exhibition there’s a lot of detailed physical work that you really need to see in person. So I really suggest that you come to the museum itself to see it”, says Dullart.
He also wants to shine a light into the dark underbelly of the giant companies that underpin social and new media. “They do everything to have you come back for more. For example, the competitive element of social media is something I think is unhealthy. The emphasis lies really on the number of friends [you have] and likes [you accrue]. That leads people to not check whether they are satisfied, but only to compare themselves to other people. You lose focus on what is important. In the end, businesses like Facebook and Instagram want to make money, rather than make people happy”.
Dullart was previously an artist-in-residence at the Rijksakademie in Amsterdam, but currently lives and works in Berlin. His art focusses on how the internet and new media affect our social and cultural lives- previous projects have including buying 2.5 million Instagram followers, and making 13,000 fictional Facebook accounts. In 2015 he won the Prix Net Art– the highest award in his media.
More information about the exhibition can be found on the Fries Museum’s website