Personal Narrative

The interest in this area has been around for a long time. Being brought up in a western society, you get bombarded with the products of that culture. Most notably for me was junk food. In our family it was something that we all looked forward to. Mum didn’t have to cook on that night, which was usually towards the end of the week. My sister and I would hop in the car and enjoy the opportunity to gorge on some chips on the way back. This food was a reward, an indulgence that helped us all escape and made everyone happy for a few hours whilst watching the TV. Junk food was just part of the advertising that came out of the TV, which was the centrepiece of our family life. Pumped into the lounge room and offering just a handful of channels, you would tolerate the commercials in between shows like Sale Of The Century. The show itself was one big info-mercial for the ideals of a materialistic lifestyle – cars, holidays and appliances, all displayed by manicured models. Successful contestants were elevated to a level of celebrity that helped sell magazines like TV week As a young person, the message was clear: to be successful was to be rich – to own what you want, and to go where you want. Quietly, I was thinking about all this, but not really questioning any of it. My main talent was in the arts, and I particularly loved being able to record onto cassettes. Secretly, I would make shows and “repackage” songs off the radio, splicing them up, slowing them down and bookend them with my own version of a DJ – an impersonation that ridiculed the manufactured voice of commercial radio. Little did I know it at the time, but this was my first “Culture Jam”, and it served a purpose. It took away some of the uninvited potency of advertising and the mainstream, a place to retreat to and question the world around me. Other sources of subversion came from public radio, which if able to make it past midnight it, I would hear fantastic audio collage and mush ups. These would showcase some of the madness of advertising simply by re contextualizing it, making it seem more sinister or more ridiculous.

Fast forward to 2013, and subvertising is more important than ever, and I say this because big companies can now infiltrate your being on the most personal of levels. Your social media platform innocently awaits its arrival.


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