one leaf, 2014
Simply put, One Leaf is a project about names; it’s about their symbolic location in life (meta), and it’s about that feeling you have when you hear your name spoken aloud by another human being (micro). I selected the first 100 names that appeared on my Facebook Friends page on any random day (one random day in particular, but for no particular reason). We cannot know how Facebook decides the order of one’s Friends on this list (Facebook does not reveal the procedure). And so, it is fascinating to note that the first 100 Facebook Friends in my list includes people with whom I’m very close (my sister, my fiancé, my closest friends in New York) as well as people with whom I’m only in touch because of Facebook (people I knew in high school, people I met at museum conferences over the years), and every kind of connection in between.
What interests me most about Facebook and the other various methods for developing or maintaining connections in the social media universe is the absence of qualities normally inherent in real-world relationships–voice, physical contact, etc. One Leaf is an attempt to re-integrate personal connections, through the naming of names, as a commentary on the (dis)placement of intimacy in social media. My Facebook Friends are here, and perhaps you are too. Follow the link below to find out (and turn your volume up).
“No leaf ever wholly equals another, and the concept "leaf” is formed through an arbitrary abstraction from these individual differences, through forgetting the distinctions…"
– On Truth and Lie in an Extra-Moral Sense, Friedrich Nietzsche (1873)