Parsons School of Design

BFA Communication Design

Thesis 2013

Jacqueline Oh
Different Forms of Isolation
Jacqueline Oh
Different Forms of Isolation

I explore the ideas of formal and conceptual isolation through various mediums. Isolation is about being alone and apart from others, a state of being often intensified in an urban environment. This work derives from my experience with the very next door neighbor, his story and the sense of isolation caused by separation, loneliness, indifference, and disconnection from the rest of the community. The different expressions in my videos will provoke the audiences to rethink the sense of isolation that how the urbanism within our modern world encourages people to isolate each other. In my work, I employed a metaphor of Betta fish: a creature whose aggressiveness toward others often leads to a habitat of solitude. Isolation takes three different forms in my videos. The first video, inspired by Hiroshi Sugimoto, describes isolation in urban workplaces where individuals are confined to small spaces, producing goods or services. The mood and containment visually communicates isolation, often without the knowledge of the occupant. The second video, inspired by Andreas Gursky, whose works often contain numerous parts that only intensify a sense of isolation in contrast to the impeccable mass they form together. This video shows how public spaces are always filled with crowds, but individuals in these spaces are irrelevant to each other, moving hastily in psychological isolation. Third video with a focus on deconstruction was inspired by Damien Hirst. A cause, process, and result of deconstruction are illustrated as each object dissolves into parts, losing its original form, visually representing isolation. I have a special interest in the fact that isolation takes a toll on individuals since it is often disguised in urban settings, depriving individuals of a chance to identify the causes of their ill feelings.

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