Digital Séance

“my refreshable online image penetrates the real. maybe you’ve summoned me instead.”

Digital Séance is a video installation that explores the relationship between the physical and the online self. Being a digital native, Merel van Altena reflects on the interdependence between the two, highlighting the increasing digital curation of the physical. The work addresses conflicting emotions, such as what it means to be “tagged” online, finding comfort in internet infinity, and an entangled sense of self-exploitation. Merel draws on the cat-like doll as a materialisation of the online self, in an attempt to appease these maladies by fostering a mystical outlook on digital technologies shaping the self. The installation invites the visitor to be entranced by the visuals on the screen, while simultaneously being reminded of the controlling nature of the digital self, as notification sounds intrude the watching experience.