Mural in the London offices of Facebook, 2018
Photographs: Jonathan Bassett

SINGULARITY NOT SELF

The mural is comprised of a diverse range of images drawn from my own lexicon, art history and popular culture. My lexicon includes the mim (a kind of emotional flesh tag that casts a shadow), croissants in cockrings, planets, gallbladders and lilies. Other images reference my current passion for the 1980’s children’s television programme The Shoe People alongside illustrations of Palladian architecture and transformed versions of artist Louis Wain’s psychedelic cats. I have combined recent images from my paintings that address virology alongside archival motifs and new images in order to produce new narratives and a heterogeneous visual field of associations that is unique to this site. These are yolked together using complex patternmaking, which includes my signature cross-hatching as well as printing with sections of packing foam.  A series of aphorisms also help to homogenise the picture plane. These slogans are drawn from the scientific theory of Complex Adjusting Systems, which can be understood as something in which the whole is more than the sum of its parts (such as this mural). Notable among these aphorisms is the mural’s title SINGULARITY NOT SELF; a provocation to question the contemporary emphasis on identity politics and the individual.