What's Good For Us

What's Good For Us

I'm interested in the work of the philosopher Jacques Derrida, and his writings on deconstruction. I have previously produced a publication called 'Binary Oppositions' which sought to visually represent Derrida's concept of the same name as I grappled to understand it. I need to read a lot more before I can attempt to adequately explain the concept of Binary Oppositions! But to summarise, as part of our way to understand the world, we categorise ideas into pairs, Derrida called these binary oppositions, and was particularly interested in the speech/writing pair and observed that speech took privilige over writing as a more authentic and authoritative mode of communication. This notion that one of the pair takes privilege over the other forms a powerful frame in which we view the world.

So, the prints. The context, well I'd been pondering armed conflict in the middle east, the idea of war and how the current media and political position is that this is necessary; that we need to protect ourselves by getting involved in conflicts outside our own borders. That this is good for us. 

I wanted to create a visual response to this idea, hence the title What's Good For Us. Using the title and context of conflict, I paired two sets of imagery; that of a warplane and the other of medication. It's pretty heavy handed I'll admit. The warplane, a B2 Stealth Bomber represents attack/defence; the medication represents a cure/poison binary.

The image is designed to be ambiguous in meaning; it really does depend on the viewer's position and values as to the message this poster communicates. Is armed conflict a poison or the cure to world problems? Will it harm us or be to our benefit? I like this tension, almost like a vibration, shaking the relationship between binaries and hopefully asking us to question our own position.

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