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Artist Statement

"Banners" uses images taken from banner advertisements found on websites; I proceeded to edit them digitally (mostly just removing the text), then had them printed into physical vinyl banners. All these images were taken from my day-to-day web browsing between facebook, webcomic sites, new sites, etc.

The internet banner ad is a nuisance, a second thought, and at most a transient link, a way station between in a series of electronic tubes. Simply reloading a page could cause it to vanish in an instant, only to be replaced by another. Sometimes they flash, sometimes they dance, and sometimes they obnoxiously proclaim that you've won a free iphone. They are interactive, clickable, and trying to sell you their link.

My project tries to sever all of these properties from the banner ad. By blowing up the banner ads into literal banners, I remove the banner's ability to be replaced, to change, to move, to flash, and to disappear. It's electronic transience is replaced by physical stability which is interactive in a different sense: it can be touched, felt, and held. Yet these banners go nowhere, and say nothing. They even lose their ability to mentally transport their viewers to or American Apparel through language, which I have (almost) stripped away. They become motionless, and more importantly, unavoidable. Lacking the ability to advertise now each banner is something else. The visible pixel becomes like the visible stroke of paint, and the women are not there to support text but rather empty space now supports the women in these banners.

What has surprised me after the fact when making this piece was how interesting each image was after its printing, with all my edits in place. Having the advertising text and cheesy animation slapped across the banner pushes the image to a secondary position, something that if left to stand alone is much more involving (or perhaps interactive) to someone who is left to wonder what that image means. In fact, what does the image mean? I feel that in asking this question I have also asked many more simultaneously. So I will leave it at that one question:

What does the image mean? 

P.S. It is my personal preference not to provide you with the original images that I used to create my final images, but if you recognize any of the ads then kudos to you.

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