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tCO mostra-M'O : Joana Machado

the Concrete Observer #8

A sharp eye for form and colour may be a generic designer requisite, but it’s a reality that’s not so often present.

Joana Machado is the girl and the arrow behind the “Never Go Offline” installation, in which she attempts to expose the intertwined parallels of our efforts both to reach others, and to be reached by them.

Co-founder and art director of Colönia – a design studio capable of cutting edge linear aesthetics – you may expect from her clear, clean fictions told through objects and images. Time seems to disappear, as geometry takes its place.

For now and the next weeks, Joana is kindly showing an aspect of her research interests, brought from the virtual world – a world which might not be that virtual anymore, as it comes with real consequences.

Photography is her way to exhibit and investigate the thin balance between on and off. Do hyper connected people actually stay in touch? Ubiquity is the white rabbit chased throughout mankind’s history, perhaps because the only ubiquitous being we have created is ourselves.

It’s much more seductive playing mysteries. In 2015 we seem to own the possibility of being present with the least effort provided by a gadget.

Two pictures to add some question marks in your smartphone’s to do list. What kind of pressure is touch? How may touch screens become mirrors? Has your touch become flat? How are you touched, and how do you touch what you do touch? Does the notion of touch implicate our rationalisations and feelings? Is touch itself essential?

This bumpy intellectual exercise may actually help to get you involved with these concerns of communication, bandwidth, proximity and presence. Positivity and negativity always relate to zero, and that zero is you. Putting two sides of a coin in confrontation is an archaic way of reasoning and a simple method of evaluation – both are sides of the same thing.

It is worth spending a little time in this installation, like an old fashioned pendulum going back and forth between the asceticism of the body to the hedonism of data.