Tao Lashley-Burnley


Tao Lashley-Burnley

Straight away it just came across that this was about negative body images perpetuated by forms of media/advertising that cause negative self images and self hatred, forcing people into weird patterns of behaviour or convincing them they aren’t worthwhile or successful if they don’t look like people on the screen. This song was a reaction against that, championing self love and not judging yourself by standards that other people or groups are trying to impose; that beauty and success aren’t things based solely on physical appearance, it’s in how you approach life, how you treat others, and how you can make others feel good in themselves.

This piece ties in with the song in terms of the visuals of a family watching television overlaid with images of fashion models. The imagery of fashion models is linked to the high standards of beauty people are bombarded with through magazines, television and all forms of media. The way in which advertising works by making people unhappy within themselves, that they aren’t complete people without buying products or changing themselves to fit others standards. 

The process of decollage links with the idea in the song of not conforming to these standards, having a positive attitude towards yourself. The tearing of the images runs alongside the concept that looking closely at these external standards exposes how they don’t stand up to scrutiny and only really make sense within itself or when people believe in it.

The reason I make decollages as part of my practice comes from my interest in the process and aesthetics of degraded billboard advertisements. I love the way these highly designed images are reconstituted through degradation into new images that mix their messages and create these comical mismatches of concepts or nonsensical stories.