Photography in the metaverse

Photography in the Metaverse

Behind the Image: Eliza Bourner explores the tension between comfort and restriction

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Bourner is selling five images as part of ART3’s Edition365 drop. Here, she unravels the concept and intentions behind the project

Eliza Bourner’s images capture moments of banal tension. A goldfish in a plastic bag, balancing on a radiator; a solitary figure standing on a chair; a woman reclining on the bed, her bubblegum seconds away from popping. The images are part of a series titled The Act of Living. Created entirely within her London flat during the pandemic, they explore contemporary society’s fixation with productivity, and our dissatisfaction with the mundane.

“Society encourages us to continuously achieve and improve,” the photographer explains, “and as such tells us our day to day lives are not good enough. With a manufactured sense of nostalgia, I illustrate an ‘Age of Anxiety’ in which our lives are filled with passive entertainment and empty distractions of materialism.”

Manipulating light and shadow within the four walls of her flat, Bourner’s images stage and spotlight isolated people and objects within the domestic setting. “Each image is created with a monotone palette to show this level of boredom and monotony,” she says. “By focusing on these details, I want to explore our dissatisfaction with the mundane.”

Bourner is currently exhibiting five images as part of Edition365: an immersive virtual exhibition and NFT drop from ART3. The collection features 365 works made between 11 March 2020 and 10 March 2021. “To look back onto these images as a record of the pandemic is to acknowledge the universal emotion that took place,” she comments.

Creating these images during the pandemic gave the series an extra layer of meaning. “The topics that I was already drawn to suddenly intensified,” she says. Making images during this period of isolation enabled Bourner to lean into this overwhelming feeling of uncertainty. “The images are a portrait of the emotions we often want to avoid – disappointment, isolation, seclusion, worry, and fear – but were unable to escape,” she says. “The images are a way of communicating the universal experience of that year and allowing viewers to connect or reconnect with the heightened emotions that we were all subject to.”

Eliza Bourner’s images are included in Edition365, an immersive virtual exhibition of 365 works documenting the events between 11 March 2020 and 10 March 2021.

The images are now available to buy as NFTs via ART3.io on OpenSea.