Consisting of several frames made from materials on which one normally treads, Footing is a response to difficulty in feeling ‘grounded’ in one’s place and time.
Bruno Latour conjectures that, “… matter represents the refusal to think away spatial and temporal characteristics and to arrive at the bare concept of an individual entity.” (Has the Critique Run Out of Steam, 245). Fitting his definition of critique- as generating more ideas than received, within this frame of reference, generates the driving concept behind the work: matter holds a potential for critique in that it allows itself to be re-contextualized in time and space while retaining a sense of history and origin.
We find our identities built as a similar bridge between disjointed places and times, tied up in physical bodies and intangible histories whose paces are not necessarily synchronized. This tension between timing is heightened in the experience of the identity through social media. Like frames per second in a video, our scrolling posts are instants compressed into both an individual and group narrative.
Online, a light has gone on behind Lacan’s two-way mirror, heightening the experience of its panoptic nature; inciting us to revisit, edit and confuse our narratives without allowing time for criticality. Like quantum chaos, banal images and statuses appear and are lost without enough time for us to make sense of why. Simultaneously, we are bodies that are exponentially attempting to fit into the constraints of an ephemeral world. To dream of the singularity as if there is no longer merit to the material individual, we must forget that it is inherent in our current process of understanding.
Steigler’s exteriorization supports this concept: allowing for the critical “to constitute itself as interface between the psychic and the social.” (Relational Ecology and the Digital Pharmakon). For the online identity, the individual and social occupy the same space, time creating the gap in which attention can be given to their edges.