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When A Stranger Calls

Is it really easier to talk to someone behind a screen? Have a look at Germaine Koh’s oldie-but-goodie project, “Call”, as she challenges social boundaries to tackle this burning question.

Photo by svala

Nowadays, most people are more comfortable communicating behind a screen or on the phone. It’s rare to see someone alone on the metro who isn’t busy typing up an email or checking their Facebook notifications.

Malaysian visual artist, Germaine Koh, challenges this social phenomenon with her project Call.

Photo by tommynorth

An old phone in a public place. Ordinary, but alluring. When the receiver is picked up, the phone automatically connects to a random participant who has agreed to receive calls in an attempt to have a conversation with a perfect stranger.

Nothing is scripted. Nothing is recorded. The idea is to have a conversation with a stranger to perhaps discover more about one’s self. Very few individuals can manage the conversation effortlessly without dropping a couple of nervous chuckles and awkward pauses.

Photo by anarchy

Is it really easier to talk behind a screen, or in this case, through the phone? How do you feel logging into the social network that is Lomography.com and conversing with who are likely “strangers”? Does the shared-passion for Analogue suffice as an icebreaker? Do photos do most of the talking? It’s nice to think that perhaps you feel the opposite on our community site – more exposed than enclosed.

Feel free to browse Germaine Koh’s latest projects on her personal website.

written by jasonskung

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