As an avid user of social media, Andrew watched the rise of “fake news,” oversharing and doctored images. With so many fake accounts and over-the-top influencers – he began to wonder, “why can’t I make *fake* art?” #VirtualGraffiti is that fake art dream come true. A series that explores storytelling, media and our willingness to believe it all.
Andrew began this series as posts on Instagram. Andrew mixes reality with fiction, using his phone and software on his computer. Sometimes the photo inspires the text, but often they develop together. Going out for a walk in his neighbourhood, Andrew would grab a quick pic and jot down the story around it.
Each image is a photo with a computer drawing of graffiti that Andrew is too chicken to actually do. But in the story, Andrew is fearless. He climbs poles, hops over subway tracks, and sets garbage dumpsters on fire. Strangers cheer him on! The world loves him!
Andrew’s goal with each piece is to create something that looks plausible – or clearly fake. Both with the computer drawing and with the story writing. They are a play on the absurdity of social media, with its love of fails, fakery and fame.
Andrew printed twelve of the Instagram series for an exhibition at Loop Gallery in 2018. Each print mimics the Instagram format of a square image and block of text surrounded by white. Also for the Loop exhibition, Andrew created twelve sound recordings. Each sound piece is a mix of Andrew’s dramatic reading of the story along with sound effects. Designed to be captured moments – as if you were actually there.
And yet, it’s all fake. 😉