The second topic that students were asked to make another artefact for, was on the subject of ‘Spectacle’. For me, spectacle was a bit of a loose term therefore it was difficult for me to come up with an idea straight away. After the two lectures on spectacle and listening to the theorist’s and theories associated with it, I was none the wiser on what type of film I wanted to make.
For inspiration I began researching theorist Guy Debord and his theory on ‘Society of the Spectacle’ Debord believed that society had succumbed to the spectacle, and is allowing itself to be controlled and distracted by such things at television or specific news items that those in power choose for you to see.
“Young people everywhere have been allowed to choose between love and a garbage disposal unit. Everywhere they have chosen the garbage disposal unit.” ― guy debord.
What this means is that even though society or young people have the freedom of choice, they choose to except their place in society and do not believe that there is anything they can do about it. A good example of this could be X Factor. This is a show that is watched by a large number of people and is effectively composed of bright lights and pretty colours. Its manipulation of audiences by focusing on the hard life and emotional trauma of its contestants emphasises this point. Even the entire sense of being a pop star and ‘superstardom’ in general is a spectacle in that it is predominately a lie portrayed by the media in order to entertain and distract the general public from their own lives.
Taking into consideration Debord’s theory that the spectacle is used to distract people, I considered what is the thing that distracts me most during my day to day life. My mobile phone. Being able to communicate to a vast amount of my friends simultaneously, while at the same time playing Tetris and checking my emails is not only a great technological feat, but is also a very tempting distraction for me. One that I can not often resist. After discussing this concept with one of my lecturers, Mez Packer, she mentioned a word I had not come across before. The Blur. After enquiring further about what this word meant she explained to me that it was a way certain people described the area outside of the screen of your phone. For example if you are walking down the street while texting and someone you know come and talks to you, they come at you ‘from the blur’. While myself and Mez disagreed on the validity of the word and how impressive it was that such a word exists. (I believed it showed the deterioration of the human mind and that our integration with technology was becoming far too great). I did feel that this was an excellent topic for me to explore.
That is when I decided to make my film focusing on the concept of ‘the blur’.