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United States of America
Avatar-Self Jason William Cole Each of us exists with a complex self-symbol—the “I”—forever in flux, always impermanent. When the “I” takes to examining itself, it usually finds a slippery notion, a never ceasing “strange loop” of symbols, interpretations, language, and representations. In short, the self finds, in its identity, the representation of a representation of a “source” which may be impossible to fully represent. Extensions of the body—the objects chosen to fill one’s environment or to envelope the body—are the self-symbol’s external representation. Therefore, the “I” becomes the signifier and things the signified. But, can this relationship be reversed? This series of images consists of digital avatar self-portraits mined from Each image originally exists as the online representation of a cyberspace socialite. The image acts as the Internet “body” of the self-symbol; the avatar-self. In the manipulated images, the supposed subject of the photograph, the human figure, is erased; it’s only evidence a rather ambiguous silhouette. Thereby, everything patently human in the image is removed, leaving only the objects, camera, and implied mirror that surround, inform, and signify the blank space of the figure, the perceived locus of the elusive “self”.
still image