Temporary Art Installation
Are You Ghosting Me?
A Valentine's Day Exhibition
30 Screen shots in second hand frames
January 31- February 14 2019
“Are you ghosting me?” started as an archiving project that collected the last conversations between people at different stages of their relationships before one of them disappeared. This phenomenon, called “ghosting,” was a relatively new dating epidemic that was gaining popularity with the increased use of online dating apps among millennials.
This archive's display took place in the form of a Valentine’s Day exhibition between January 31st and February 14th at Espace Pop in Montreal. The concept was for the show to be a “Valentine’s Day Gift” to the city of Montreal; the admission was free.
At its core, the exhibition had a romantic goal: to create a feeling of togetherness for those who experienced “ghosting,” a phenomenon that can feel confusing and solitary. Its tagline was “A Valentine’s Day exhibition for the confused and the broken-hearted.”
I wanted to create tension between analog and digital processes—which was a personal artistic exploration I was interested in at the time—by displaying a digital screenshot in an analogue way. Most of the screenshots were sent to me by strangers on Reddit after I made an open call on a dating subreddit. The fact that the screenshots came from strangers from around the world added to the feeling of togetherness. The exhibition's contents were collectively created. The conversation screenshots were displayed in second-hand frames to add to the analogue-vs-digital tension. However, the fact that both the picture frames and these conversations were “thrown away” created a common symbolic thread in the display.
The exhibition included about 30 screenshots, a voice recorder for the visitors to share their stories, Tylenol and a psychology article pointing out this OTC medicine can help with heartbreak feelings. Each frame had a label next to it, telling the story of that interaction and the screenshot’s submitter’s comments.
above: some frames from the exhibition
Photographer - Can Unal