My work combines the practice and use of photography, sculpture, video, and performance, generating a mélange of material.

I explore the frustration of our modern day technological living by examining our preoccupation with the externals of screens, devices and the networks that enfold us much like an exoskeleton. Does the virtual shell provide a useful means to connect us or is it simply a self-indulgent and obstructive narcissistic machine? Is it liberating or an exercise in futility?  Are we left to make a choice: intimacy or isolation? Humanity lives in an interconnected web with inherent contradictions— virtual, physical and spiritual. The ancient Greeks looked on the omphalos (navel) as both a symbol of our umbilical origins and as a portal to a sacred world of being, a meditation to unite the inside and outside of self. What is the new navel gazing?

I am interested in the relationship between technology and my body. I am drawn to the overlooked, the discarded, the digital + physical refuse, the mistakes, the moment when digital tools break down or lose their function. What happens when we lose a haptic sensibility, a diminishment of the tactile – our own fleshiness? I search for the human traces within the digital interface as reminders of our physical forms Our virtual presence only emphasizes the displacement of our bodies.

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Ava Hassinger (b.1986, New York, NY) is a former resident of RAIR (Recycled Artist in Residence) in Philadelphia. Her work has been featured in exhibitions to include Slow Burn, John H. Baker Gallery, West Chester University, Extra Parts, Good Children Gallery, New Orleans, LA, Alternative Facts, Pleiades Gallery, New York, NY, and Descent, ICA, Philadelphia. She is a graduate of NYU with a degree in Photography and Imaging and a MFA recipient from the University of Pennsylvania.