David Byrne’s Fake Apps Comment On Digital Culture

As part of an exhibit called ‘Social Media,’ Byrne has created app ‘portraits’ to depict their prevalence in our culture.

Considering the increasing prevalence of ‘apps’ in our culture as a new kind of software for devices such as phones and tablets it would make sense for someone to appropriate their form for an art project.

This is exactly what David Byrne has done with his fake iPhone apps which are more like portraits of the apps that examine not only their formal aspects but also use that form to communicate particular ideas about social networking, online communication and our increasing reliance on apps to do more for us.

For example, Childster exaggerates this reliance by acting as a virtual babysitter for parents too busy to watch their children because of the supposed distant, asynchronic relationship that online communication can create.

The Weaselface app comments on the pervasiveness snarkiness that has become the commonplace voice for many blogs and reportage in the digital world.

Byrne’s fake apps, is just one part of a group show featuring the work of Miranda July, Aram Bartholl, Jonathan Harris, Christopher Baker, Jonathan Harris, Robert Heinecken, Harrell Fletcher, Sep Kamvar and Penelope Umbrico, will be part of the show “Social Media” at Pace Gallery in New York City. The show will run from September 16  to October 15.

David Byrne

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