There are no girls on The Internet (2017)
Created for There are no girls on The Internet, curated by Drew Nikonowicz & Melissa Spitz, Localhost Gallery, Minecraft (2017)
There Are No Girls on the Internet was a group exhibition of 15 women artists, the majority of whom experienced puberty concurrently with the personal computer revolution. The artists represent a unique transitional perspective from a time where life existed before the Internet.
They experienced sex in AOL chatrooms before they did physically. Early on, girls are aware that being a female online is treacherous territory. There Are No Girls On the Internet, began as a meme in the early ‘male-prevalent’ days of Usenet, a 1980’s digital bulletin board system used for games like Dungeons and Dragons and World of Warcraft.
Male users would frequently pose as female characters to elicit special gifts or treatment during gameplay. This created an arena where men are men, women are men and allowed statements like “Tits? Or Get the f*** out” to become the norm. This notion that real women did not exist on the Internet only contributed to our isolation from it.
There Are No Girls on the Internet is intended to function as a timeline of our online representation. From immediate rejection, to childhood diaries, to obsessive behavior from the opposite sex and trolls to an ‘inventible’ adaptation, surrender or death, the digital sphere has long created conflict for women participants. To have a stake in this overwhelming game we must push back. Being a tomboy was a four letter word in our adolescence and overt sexual criticism is meant to follow viewers throughout the show.