Cookie Gate considers the practices of artists exploring notions of consumerism, mainstream advertising, mass media production and its inherent infiltration into our daily lives. This exhibition inspects the continuing investigation of the role of the artist in this contemporary climate, narrowing its focus on visceral communication and the dissemination of information, and indeed the vicissitudes of such undertaking.
In our hyper consumer oriented society, we are progressively bombarded with ideas and perceptions of what we want or need through mass media. The apparent need to represent ourselves with certain identifying material objects and to categorise ourselves via the individuals with whom we associate often comes directly from suggestions in advertisements and digital culture. Often we don't even know what we want until we see it on TV, online, in a magazine, in the window of a store, in people's home's or even on their body. We continually turn to advertising, the very source of the production of desire, to discover and determine our passions; from extremes of realism or glorified fantasy.
Consumption presents a cyclical phenomenon; the more we consume, the more we crave consumption. We are always searching for what's missing. We are never quite satisfied. This increase in consumption can become an addiction. Corporations, brand names, and images become rituals, obsessions, and diversions. Consumption is made all but too easy.
Cookie Gate comments on the methodologies employed in terms of how an artist can effectively and efficiently communicate with one’s audience, and will peer deeper into the transparency or, indeed, opacity of this pre-engagement; deliberate, passive, or otherwise. In this respect, information promulgation is not always clear, not always direct, and can become easily distorted through the artist’s chosen medium and channels of communication. This bi-polarity, manifesting itself in these presented artistic forms and their inherent elusory foci, lead us to question both the functionality and the capacity of the artist’s role in the information-overloaded milieu of our present.
Sometimes we go shopping to buy mere necessities, other times we are looking to fulfill a deficiency or to reward ourselves for all our ‘hard’ work. Sometimes we just want a cookie. Can I have another?