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Label: alison jackson

Friday 10th April 2015Artist Spotlight: Alison Jackson

It's hardly any secret that modern society is completely obsessed with celebrity. It's impossible to browse the net or even stand in line at the grocery store without being constantly bombarded with the latest gossip about who did what to whom, now with 5 extra hours of analysis and speculation. It's frenetic and never-ceasing, and completely and utterly unavoidable. Enter Alison Jackson, a prominent photographer whose entire body of work is based on (you guessed it!) celebrities. Perhaps more accurately, however, her work is about our obsession with them.

Jackson's work, which has been prominently featured in England and around the world since the late 90s, creates fake paparazzi photos using celebrity lookalikes. So carefully and meticulously created, they regularly fool the celebrity-obsessed hordes, and that has only become even more prevalent thanks to the rapid-fire sharing that happens online, usually with little-to-no fact checking or even basic attempts at locating the image source.

Speaking to Complex magazine, Jackson said, "I’m fascinated by how people get so emotional and so involved in celebrities when they haven’t ever met them. There’s no close relationship, it’s purely a mediated one, and it runs as an industry. The publicists run it, they make money out of it, the celebrities get a fantastic lifestyle from being famous, the magazines and the TV shows make a lot of money from it, and everyone aspires to it."

Jackson's work originally caught the public imagination with faked photos of Princess Diana and Dodi Al-Fayed, and their supposed baby, but has since gained serious steam, as she won a prestigious BAFTA award for her work on the BBC2 comedy series Doubletake, based on similar principles to her own still image work.

Still speaking to Leigh Silver of Complex, she said, "We're used to seeing celebrities as two-dimensional images on the Internet, in magazines, or on television, so when the public sees the photograph, it doesn’t really matter whether it’s the real person or not. The celebrity can be replaced, and I suppose that’s what I am doing with my photography and film."

An excellent point, and one that will constantly need to be made until we finally have a meaningful dialog about media literacy, self-awareness and the value of our own lives when compared to the idealized perception of a stranger's life we've never even encountered. Take a look at more of the works of Alison Jackson at her website, alisonjackson.com.
 

Posted on April 10th 2015 on 05:42pm
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