Revealing online dating
Exhibition 21st century Neanderthal is a serious, but possibly also comical research into today’s online dating world seen through artists’ eyes.
The idea for this exhibition came from personal experiences of myself and my friends with online dating. As this concept is nowadays so embedded into our everyday lifestyle, it is hard not to be involved in it in any kind of way.
We think of online dating as fun and easy. It can be a noncommittal way to spend your spare time, a break from a hectic schedule. But it’s not real, it’s digital. Online dating gives you the opportunity to screen through potential suitors and eliminate the alleged rotten eggs immediately. And this is true up until the point we cross into the real world.
We have all heard about the horror stories, following encounters on dating platforms. And we have all heard the success stories and happily ever afters. My question has always been WHY do we consciously put ourselves in supposed vulnerable situations when meeting the person from the dating site that we think we fancy? We’ve built up a ‘relationship’ with this fantasy before we’ve even met.
And let’s not forget that online profiles can be a fallacy, with all the fake information the other user wants us to believe. Presenting yourself online might be like writing a fairy tale. Chatting to people online is writing what you think the other person would like to hear. Or just simply living out your fantasies that you are too scared to experience in the real world. You can set a very confident persona and emulate all of your ‘heroes’, to play the role of the person you wish to be. And this impersonality of online dating caused me to question the behaviour of current society.
I am aware that this is quite a researched topic in the art world and I am not the first one to question it. But especially because it is so embedded into our daily lives, the need to challenge it is even more present.