Paris College of Art (PCA)
Since the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic, human faces have become obstructed by face masks, serving as a membrane between us and the outside world, or the subject’s face and its photographic representation. How can a photograph portray an accurate representation of a subject while they are wearing a face mask? How do photographers safely work with subjects during the pandemic? Facing The Void, a transmedia project, aims to address these concerns by offering a practical, yet fantastical solution – photographic face masks. Facing The Void consists of a series of photographs that document the catalyst of the project, “The Void” of the pandemic, and visual artifacts from the mask making process. The project also consists of a staged documentary film that both documents reality, interviewing subjects wearing photographic masks, while also conveying a science fiction story, projecting a hypothetical future in which photographic masks become the status quo. Facing The Void aims to document the complexities of masks and serves as an experiment attempting to address issues of representation and identification during the pandemic. The project raises the issue of digital representation of the human form. As a result, the work has prompted discussion and community during this dark time in human history.