Typically, a phallus is used as a symbol of male power. In order to subvert this, I use the image of a substitute phallus to signify something that renders the male party redundant and removes the intimacy found in sexual encounters. Modern technology creates a distancing in communication – it is done online rather than in person. This can result in a feeling of powerlessness. In an attempt to regain my control, I chose the image of a dildo as starting point. The simulation of male genitalia allows me to take ownership of the phallus without the male figure it is typically attached to. Taking inspiration from the repetitive format of social media platforms such as Instagram, I use a stencil of 29 dildos to create a repeat pattern within my work. Each layer of the stencil reduces the visibility of the dildos, creating a subtlety that re-invites the intimacy lost. The viewer must be physically close to the painting to understand what the pattern is built from. By applying thin layers of white oil paint, I aim to give the paintings a sense of purity from the dense white. The repetition of this task reflects that of performance action; my labour of creating lost intimacy manifests itself through this painting. The contrast of the object and the white paint invites the viewer to question ideas of sexuality in relation to purity. My text-based work gives the viewer a way in by adding an element of humour and hinting the subject matter relates to the nuances of a one-night stand. The titles of my work further indicate a transactional form of physical encounter rather than an emotional investment. They suggest each party only considers what they individually gain or their individual needs in a physical encounter that is far more a performative act than intense partnership.

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