Everything and Nothing x Sketch London

An exploration into the highs and lows of social media.

In an increasingly digital world, it’s important we take a moment to step back and consider how the internet, particularly social media, plays a role in shaping our identity both online and offline. 

For James Burke, exploring the intersection of art and its relationship with identity is a key component of his art practice. As Founder & Executive Creative Director of Acrylicize, his fascination with these particular themes naturally permeates into the studio’s output, resulting in a broad range of creative interventions that rigorously affirm a client’s brand values and narratives, to build meaningful connections with people and the spaces they inhabit. 

In collaboration with art-tech startup Thy Art, James’ recent interactive work ‘Everything and Nothing’ has extended its residency at Sketch – appropriately one of the most Instagrammed locations in London – alongside artworks by famed British artist David Shrigley. Now reopened to the public following lockdown, the work is available to view at the Mayfair restaurant until 30th November 2020.

​Everything and Nothing questions the effects of our new-found addiction to the brief euphoria that we experience on a daily basis via online gratification. The piece uses social media as a key component of the performance. Each time an image of the work is ‘liked’ on James’ Instagram, a puff of air inflates the balloon, until it eventually bursts under the pressure. The purpose of the artwork is to encourage the viewer to question if our sense of value and worth have become intrinsically linked to other people’s validations in endless machine-driven feedback loops.

James Burke comments: ​“I’m delighted that Everything and Nothing will take residency at Sketch. I admire their commitment to the arts and their continued support of artists. This piece is very much a conversation between artwork and viewer and requires real-time interaction to complete the circle. My hope is that guests at Sketch will take something from the experience and consider the wider implications of our relationship with social media and digital platforms”.

To interact with the artwork, visit James Burke’s Instagram @jamesburke_artist.

Find out more about James’ work from his fine art website, jamesburkeartist.com.

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