You are not alone
12th March - 30th April 2017
In her new series of paintings 'You are not alone', Joëlle Dubois examines the impact of social media without subjecting it to any explicit critique. She observes the (unusual) human behaviour that she sees around her. The artwork of the artist encompasses dramatic suicide attempts, sneaky booty pics and a dash of humour. It is an exaggerated image of the role that social media plays in our society and how love, relationships and sexuality are being experienced through a small screen. Her interest in new technologies grew when she studied in South Korea during the summer of 2014. Inspired by the constant stream of photos and film clips on the internet she confronts the viewer with explicit scenes of private life. By means of playful improvised compositions, she captures both the surfeit and the transient nature of the images. Her paintings seem to glorify the glamour of the global society, but in her colourful figurative paintings on wooden panels, she also deals with such topics as gender, sexuality and fetishism.
The work often isolates the characters to show that despite their constant communication online, we can still feel isolated or lonely in real life. Actual reality is much too monotonous and boring for us, the digital world at our fingertips is much more interesting. Checking Facebook updates, posting on Twitter, keeping up with other people’s digital lives seems more important. This experience with endless varieties of images and videos, of attraction and repulsion, is not a binary dynamic of approval and aversion. What evokes disgust, intrigues at the same time. The sensation that takes place on that little screen seduces us. It seems that we depend on social media to the point of addiction without our digitally dictated society fully realising it. It’s becoming the social norm.
Joëlle Dubois is an artist born and currently working in Ghent-Belgium. She studied illustration (BA) and graduated in 2015 as a Master in Fine Arts and LUCA, School of Arts, Ghent. In 2012 she studied Illustration BA (Hons) at UCA (University of the Creative Arts) Maidstone (UK) and in 2014 she participated in a Ceramic course at Hanyang University in Seoul (South-Korea). Besides her artwork, Joëlle Dubois also does editorial work, she frequently illustrates for a Belgian newspaper De Morgen.