Outside in (extra)ordinary screenteriors in the era of virtual public interiority

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Rana Abudayyeh


The current COVID-19 pandemic has placed immense value on our interior settings and their respective objects. As a result, interior spaces, augmented with virtual streams of data, are becoming instrumental settings for everyday activities. Such a state engenders new thinking regarding interior space, one in which private settings are understood as primary nodes for public exchanges. The implications of this new environment are all-encompassing, positioning the most intimate places and objects at the core of improvised virtual communities and subjecting private spaces to rapid retooling to address unfamiliar urgencies. The resulting condition  is one of amalgamated physical and virtual parameters, often with discordant assemblies. Central to this unfolding state of affairs, technology has emerged as an indispensable medium. The legibility of our settings through digital devices has led to a new type of processed interior space; fragmented and dispersed across various localities, it is unified through its reading within the boundary of the screen.

This article presents a set of graphic reflections on computer-screen interiors, coined screenteriors. While this new public interior was courtesy of a global pandemic, it is here to stay. Screenteriors are set within our intimate places and privy to various facets of our everyday lives. They are transmitted in real-time and often recorded on distant storage clouds, scrambled at times, subject to delays and freezes, filtered, and modified at will, streamed back and forth between recipients and devices, and always under the gaze of the camera. Here and now, a new interior emerges where screens frame and interpolate a new typology of space.

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How to Cite
Abudayyeh, Rana. 2021. “Outside In: (extra)ordinary Screenteriors in the Era of Virtual Public Interiority”. Idea Journal 18 (01):237-50. https://doi.org/10.51444/ij.v18i01.432.


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