Staycation Island is created from found images and borrowed 3D forms, modeled by Google SketchUp users. Freddy Tuppen’s virtual desert island, compiled from images in the public domain, acts as the platform for an extruded still of a popular fish tank screensaver.
Referencing its moving counterpart’s ability to transform the computer screen into a living environment, Staycation Island represents an artificial and uninhabitable world, a closed ecosystem. The camera pans from left to right, reminiscent of the camera movement commonly used in early side-scrolling video games, a viewpoint associated with detachment and exteriority.
The ‘staycation’, popularised by the economic crash of 2008 and the consequences of diminishing disposable income, is the practice of engaging in leisure activities at, or within driving distance of the home. Rather than travelling to foreign countries in search of beach resorts or city breaks, the staycationer seeks gratification from nearby comforts. By relating the notion of the staycation to the screensaver, Tuppen questions the capacity for the screensaver, often a photographic representation of a dreamt-of elsewhere, photoshopped to a high level of artifice, to satisfy the necessity for escape from daily routine.
Freddy Tuppen’s work examines how externalisations of memory such as photography and cinema affect our experience of architectural space. In doing so he explores how the fallibility of human memory can become an agent for the imagination. Tuppen’s recent practice focuses on how our personal experiences of geography and travel are increasingly fragmented by the mass consumption of images. By creating hybrid environments, both physical installations and virtual animations, he explores how travel shows, glossy supplements and online advertising manipulate our experience.
Recent exhibitions include Placeholder, Store, London; Cold Sweat, Bill Brady, Miami; Making Holes in Water, Total, Athens. He completed his MFA at the Slade School of Fine Art in 2012 and his undergraduate degree at The Bartlett School of Architecture, where he is currently a tutor. In 2011, Tuppen co-founded STORE, an association of artists and architects, which implements an open programme of events, exhibitions and short courses.