Following the news is a painful experience. Not just because it makes one feel powerless in the face of negative events, but because of how those events are portrayed. Everything is a binary: Good or bad, left or right, in or out; and these are padded with meaningless statements and stock avoiding phrases.
My personal outlet then became a project investigating this language as well as democratic imagery. The first stage of research resulted in an installation of 3 posters in Tollcross polling station in Edinburgh.
Each follows a rigid formula:
Base the page on the line of the border in conflict (America/Mexico, UK/Europe, Middle East/Europe)
Select an article about the border issue (Brexit, Trump’s wall, and the “Migrant Crisis”).
Disect the language to find the filler phrases (with the exception of, would be better if) and the binary words (stay/leave, here/there,near/far)
Simplify each issue down to a single icon.
Overlay excerpts of the article and finally a voting element.
This project then developed further to be exhibited at New Blood in London.
Through showing it I was selected as one of Design Week’s Top 5 to watch, as well as a D&AD team favourite, and offered an internship at 180Amsterdam.
Since leaving university I have continued this personal visual practice. It has developed into something other, and will continue to develop into something even more other. Until then it is:
A Sovereign Nation.
A safe space.
A set of brand guidelines.
An international exclusive online nation called nowwwhere.
But doesn’t exist.
Or it only exists because it says it does.