street art
Rebecca Wayman

The Social Paradox: Pop-up street art depicting social media concerns heads to London

A pop-up street art exhibition is coming to London this week, highlighting people’s increasingly frightening reliance over social media and technology.

Running from November 23-26, and dubbed ‘The Social Paradox’, 10 street artists from across the globe have been commissioned to portray what the subject means to them.

Although technology has added countless benefits to our modern day society, it obviously comes with a warning, too. People may be virtually connected, but this doesn’t mean they are ‘switched on’ in real life. Technology can connect people closely, but it can unconsciously make people distant to those closest to them.

Latif Baluch, co-founder of Calio, commented: “My co-founder Ramy and I believe that people often use technology and social media in the wrong way.

“These platforms were initially built to make things easier, to encourage us to interact and communicate with the people we truly care about. Unfortunately, they often have the opposite effect.

“This online search for instant gratification and constant need to ‘share’ can lead to anxiety and fuel our insecurities. We believe street art enables us to bring people together to discuss this social paradox in a more playful and creative way.”

The exhibition takes place from November 23-26 at the Stolen Space Gallery in London, curated by Rom Levy. The general public will be able to attend the show on the 25 and 26, following private viewings on Thursday and Friday.

FourPure, an up-and-coming Bermondsey-based craft brewery will be there, providing craft beer at the event. In addition, Hackney-based Butler’s Gin will be serving cocktails.

Calio is aiming to support local brands who complement its brand ethos.

The company is a new personal calendar app, allowing consumers to organise events and use social media and technology ‘the right way’.

Rom Levy, curator of the exhibitions, added: “Coming from a movement that rose to fame thanks to the use of Internet and social media, it was really motivating for me to curate The Social Paradox exhibition.

“The theme could also be applied to street art, as the influx of images online is kind of stopping people from exploring the streets to find new artworks. As the most popular movement in art history, street art is a great platform to raise awareness on this message.

“Striking and vibrant artworks were created for this unique exhibition which will surely get people to reflect on The Social Paradox in a different way than anything they’ve seen or heard before.”

iHeart, one of the contributing artists, also commented: “Social media is so deeply embedded in our daily lives that I felt it was unfair for it to be exempt from any mockery.

“It’s sad to think that the technology that has made us privy to every waking moment of each other’s lives is also the wedge that drives us further from the people peripheral to our screens.

“However, I take refuge knowing that we can still bring people together for art shows that celebrate them drifting apart.”

Every piece of art to be displayed is exclusive to this exhibition.

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