F O M O
Fear of missing out
by Debbie Harman
Fear of missing out affects many aspects of our lives, how we dress, what we say, who we hang out with. What sort of house we buy, our penchant for new furniture and the latest fashion. How we search for that one special person, trawling the internet or scouring darkened nightclubs. This fear of missing out is even more amplified in lives of adolescents as they navigate the school cliques, the bullies and the moraes of social networking.
When I was a teenager, I had a recurring nightmare about a checkerboard that expanded, gradually covering the world. I no longer have the nightmare, but it has become part of my personal imagery. The checkerboard has become synonymous with the plastic that factories continually produce, the cities that creep ever outwards, unsustainable population growth, the cancer that creeps within our bodies and the newest fears that are continually promoted by the media.
Many of the works in this exhibition also reference current forms of communication used by teenagers. Texting which is overtaking and changing our written languages, also wields the power to torment and bully. And of course, the characters stem from my work about Alice, and my use of her as a metaphor for the adolescent experience.