Isabel MargotBachelor of Contemporary Art
‘Entity(ies)”) arising out of, relating to, or connected in any way with’,
2021, text, sound, video, bodies, smartphones, internet
Isabel Margot’s recent project interrogates the embodied effects of digital technologies. Taking its title from Samsung's Terms and Conditions, ‘Entity(ies)'') arising out of, relating to, or connected in any way with’ arose from the realisation that an overheating laptop and an exerted body share a similar warmth. By assessing how we interact with screens, Margot's interactive smartphone-based work aims to challenge the abbreviated attention spans of the digital age. By expanding the margins of virtual architecture, the work subverts learnt online navigation by demanding multi-directional scrolling. This prioritisation of considered and active engagement reveals ‘operator’ as an apt alternative to ‘viewer’ which erroneously hierarchises vision, overlooking the site’s interplay between sound, touch and sight. As operators access and traverse the site, their spines will likely bend, adapting to the smartphone’s directionality. Hence, the work is innately performative, as it cannot exist or function without the choreography of bodies and their altered postures. Whilst operators flip their phones to read sections of inverted text, the device’s screen display auto-adjusts its orientation, creating an inter-related dynamic that necessitates unfamiliar negotiation. Whilst gazing at the screen, its emanating blue light reaches the back of the retina, foregrounding bodily porosity.