How has technology connected us in more ways than was once conceivable, yet isolated millions at the same time?
Pickersgill’s photography series Removed is intended to highlight the absurd levels to which we’ve become addicted to technology. He created the images by asking strangers and friends to remain still and capturing the scene after removing their phones. The result is a starkly surreal compilation of black-and-white photographs depicting the dark side of hyper-connectivity.
Glue is a more dramatic take on the issue. Directed by Bo Mirosseni, it focuses on the breakdown of a couple’s relationship as a result of their addiction to technology. Alternating scenes showing one of the two on their phone while the other tries desperately to communicate with them culminates in all-out destruction of electronic devices. Shot in 16mm film, Glue ends happily with the couple reconciled and on their way to rekindling the connection that was lost.
Technology has been incredibly useful, but at the same time revealed to have alarming side effects as seen in the narratives above. How might we navigate these challenges? What are the implications of such isolation, and how can we design solutions that will address these?