Cyber-Selves Searching for Love is a visual and audio installation that explores the “cyber-self” through the conversations of online daters. The “cyber-self” is a version of our persona that lives and exists only in cyberspace, or online. It is one of the many versions of our persona that each individual embodies, or is what the artist, Julianne Rahimi, refers to as, the “multiple-selves.”
The multiple-selves is a concept Julianne has been researching over the course of her MFA degree. Using esteemed academics and philosophers, such as Wendy Chun, Walter Benjamin, Michel Foucault, Jeremy Bentham, and more, Julianne argues in her research that we embody multiple versions of ourselves that differ to our “physical-self.” Julianne explores this concept through, what she believes to be, the most intimate version of the cyber-self, the cyber-self we are when using online dating platforms.
Cyber-Selves Searching for Love is meant to display this research and ignite a discussion about the multiple-selves. Projected are conversations between online daters that partook in Julianne’s research. The conversations are shown in circles to represent the eternity of love. Each conversation floats around in the background while a single exchange is displayed statically in the foreground. Users can listen to the static exchanges or read the text to decide whether or not they would like to know more about this couple. If they would, they can swipe right, as they would on a mobile dating app, to, essentially, accept the conversation and continue. If they do not care for this conversation, they can swipe left and, essentially, reject the conversation, bring to the screen a new conversation from a different couple. Cyber-Selves Searching for Love is meant to emulate the gestures of mobile dating apps, such as Tinder and Bumble, where these conversations originally took place.
Julianne Rahimi is a visual artist, photographer, and programmer with interests in fashion and visual storytelling.
She started her art career at the University of California, Santa Barbara, where she pursued a Bachelor Degree in Art and Art History. During this time, her work was exhibited at five exhibitions on campus. Upon graduation, she attended Goldsmiths, University of London for her MFA in Computational Arts. She is interested in understanding where the real world and the digital world meet, and how that junction affects human life as a whole. Her practice focuses on user interactions and storytelling through various visual forms.
Recently, her practice has focused more on user interactions and she has begun exploring the ways in which technology has effected love. This exploration is about understanding the multiple selves, or how we are different online than we are in real life. Her project will include dialogs from online relationships to spark a conversation about the different personas we embody because of modern technology.