A SOCIAL OCCASSION
A Social Occasion is the fifth chapter of my project exploring virtual worlds and video game culture through the lens of World of Warcraft. This show consists of pairs of archival inkjet prints of screenshots from in-game social events alongside photographic prints from digital photos I made traveling in-person to the official World Of Warcraft fan convention BlizzCon at the Anaheim Convention Center in California in 2008 and 2009. Throughout my process of making work with online video game games and their fandom, I became increasingly fascinated by the way the two seemingly divergent spaces of virtual and physical were actually deeply intertwined. The increased proximity of these places only seemed to intensify both the loneliness, the omnipresent vast distance of the digital chasm, and the camaraderie of a shared story, a shared vision. Yet, this intensity born of an absence, constantly presents a massive challenge to the traditional language of photographic representation. These pairings leverage the heightened tension of digital fan culture manifest to think through the way increasingly our shared narratives are shaped by this void.