Vanitas Consumerism

This project combines 17th century Dutch paintings with modern mass consumption to demonstrate a modern perspective on death. Vanitas paintings highlights elements of death through memento mori symbolism. Consumerism is the project adds a unique element to the artwork and shows the 'death' of the planet through consequences as well as the 'death' of projects ranging from meat to technology. 

Fast food was one example of including humour in the images in an attempt to draw in viewers where the message can be read. The mass production of industrial farming is evident in this image specifically as McDonalds is a world famous company. 

Candles, skulls, flowers, and wine visible in the pictures are links to vanitas paintings as each item represent the passage of time leading to death in their own ways. Combined with items belonging to mass production pushes the message of death.

The games in this image replace the books typically used in the 17th century paintings. The modern day sees games instead of books as items of the wealthy and as such were an contempory replacement. 

This painting-appearing photography looks at Covid-19 which led to the halting of many business and mass producing of other items such as dispoable masks. Fast food companies also suffered during the time which is why there is a lock of food in the image and the Starbucks cup is empty. 

Using Format