As seen in Autumn Quarterly Issue: 02.
In her second show at Autumn, multimedia artist Madelyne Beckles delves further into her search history snapshots exhibited in her first duo-show with Delilah Rosier, Masking in More Fun with A Friend. In her new piece Endless Scroll, Beckles screen captures her computer activity in real-time, then speed-ups the video recording to give a more expansive look at her search history.
“Since doing the screen shots, I’ve been interested in tracing my steps in different facets online and preserving my history in other ways then “searching”. I feel like the searches were kind of a process work to do this kind of thing. It’s less of a constant stream of thought, I’m going to be aware that I’m recording myself, but definitely by the night I will forget. I think it will be more of a candid exploration of my history. And I’m going to try not to sensor myself so I’m sure there will be porno moments and lurking people we know, but sped up so that its hard to decipher.”
Self-reflexive and process based, Beckles uses this digital playback to draw new conclusions and reveal truths about our relationship with technology. In doing so, Beckles examines the way virtual landscapes act as a constant extension of ourselves. She draws attention to many ways we extend ourselves virtually in the search for self-definition, self-loathing, perversity or productivity. How we filter ourselves through the digital, sensor ourselves, define ourselves, fuel narcissism, and attain social capital. Digital work gives the pretense of impersonal and banal, but as Beckles discloses, it is essential to our understanding of self. Meaning can be derived from our most private sedative moments as well as the ones we choose to make public. This is perhaps the only way to archive, or attempt to archive, our candid, everyday relationship with technology. Endless Scroll explores Beckles stream of thought, cyclical digital routines and patterning impulses. Like, post, repeat. Scrolling, scrolling, scrolling. By recording every moment of her online activity, Beckles begins to engage in a dialogue about how the notion of private and public has changed with our online omnipresence.
“I think it will read more universally, in terms of the patterns. The search histories were very much so my own thought pattern, whereas Endless Scroll is more concerned with the intrinsic patterns of how we operate on our computers.”
Beckles is living in Montréal while studying Art History and Women’s Studies at Concordia. Beckles’ work explores themes of narcissism, self-deprecation and shame through a critical race feminist framework. Beckles’ work explores the ways in which we can subvert the indoctrinated rules of social media while examining our own constructed image and the problematic nature of always showing our “best”.