The notion behind the series “Digital Waste: The Sweet Smell of Burning” highlights the behavioural issues of taking excessive photographs and a disproportionate exchange of worthless information on various social media platforms. Furthermore, both these behaviours lead to much deeper concerns such as living in the virtual world, instant gratification, detachment from emotionally meaningful relationships and it’s hypnotic effect on a human mind. The works present these issues metaphorically through photographs, objects and interactive audio-video. The intention of these works is to raise awareness of the current social issues in a subtle yet humorous way.
The photographs and objects primarily use the rejected images. The video work, which at the moment is a work in progress (nearing completion) highlights the engagement with meaningless information, at times leading to vocalisation (arm-chair activism) or at other times demonstrating indifference towards various social issues.
Juxtaposing these works together initiates a dialogue, at the same time individual pieces are capable of independently stimulating a thought process.
Initial explorations for the series started with the photographs. Statistical predictions confirm that in the year 2017, 3.93 trillion photos will be stored on various storage devices worldwide. Over the years this number has been steadily growing at the rate of 9%. This simply means perpetually everyone sits on thousands of unused images that they consider as not worthy enough for use.
Photographic works circles around the notion of the abundance of image recurrence, it’s curation process and classification as “rejects”. Curation process brings forward many images that are not aesthetically appealing or is a mere recurrence of the same scene. With the digital technology advancement, this number has significantly increased. While ruminating over such photographs, Madhvee feels, these images can be used in more meaningful manner.
To further explore the possibilities and to break the 2-dimensional aspect of the photographs, the rejected photo prints are used to create the objects. These objects are an extension of the photographs and they provide a scope for investigating another aspect of digital waste, while still maintaining the element of ambiguity. The objects in themselves are capable of an individual comprehension, however, juxtaposing them with the photographs initiates an interesting dialogue.
On an average an adult spends 3 hrs a day, translating into 1,095 hrs a year browsing through miscellaneous information on various social media. The interactive video works, “The F-art of Social Media” consisting 3 videos, uses text, videos and images available on group chats, and it is a satirical attempt to capture the involuntary and to and extent hypnotic physical and mental involvement. The concept is inspired by the abundance of frivolous pieces of information on various social media platforms that unintentionally acts as a breeding ground for instant gratification.