For two weeks in March 2017 I had the opportunity to present an interactive exhibition at the Window Box of 107 Projects in Redfern. Lonely Artist Looking For A Friend was a project conceived specifically for that space. I created a small display for the Window Box in form of a personal ad from a lonely artist looking for friends in the big city and inviting viewers to reach out to me via social media. The main interaction happened on a Snapchat account specially created for the duration of the project. Some people also left hand written notes in a mailbox installed at the 107 Projects cafe.
Being an artist working away in your studio can be very isolating. And the older you get the harder it becomes to make new friends. The themes of friendship and personal relationships have been cropping up in my work before, including the Snapchat project from 2016. This exhibition was a continuation of my previous experiments using social media as an artistic medium.
As soon as the interactive project started taking off the realization hit me that no social media interaction can substitute real face-to-face friendships. It was thus a somewhat bitter-sweet experiment, although as a result of this exhibition I was able to connect with a few people and one of them I have even met in person. The project served as a catalyst of sort because as it unfolded I started making new real-life offline friends and also devised some new ideas on how to connect with like-minded people in person.