For this project, I chose the topic of Obsession. The obsession for this project is:
Obsessed with Nostalgia
Exploration on the anatomy of 80s nostalgia in pop culture:
- Article: https://filmschoolrejects.com/pop-culture-obsessed-with-1980s/
- Video Essay: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Radg-Kn0jLs
Annoyance is a great motivator. Currently, i’m seeing an obsession with the 80s aesthetic and romanticisation of the era in contemporary pop culture, and people my age (who did not grow up in the 80s) are also wishing that they could grow up in this period.
It is annoying for me, when people my age say that they wished they could live in that era, because i’m pretty sure if they were to travel back in time to the 80s, they’d wanna come back to 2019 as soon as possible. It’s like people are obsessing about the 80s but forgetting the crisis and problems happening during the era.Through this illustration, I want to take a critical stance on this nostalgic romanticisation of the 80s.
Key Points covered in article and video essay:
- 30 Year Cycle (this refers to the romanticisation of eras by the present generations, for examaple, the 80s romanticised the 50s, the 50s romanticised the 20s.)
- Anatomy of Nostalgia
- Restorative Nostalgia: Recapture and reiterate the past, more to documentation
- Reflective Nostalgia: More escapist, longing to things that are lost to time. Emphasis on the simple and stability of life.
- Deconstructive Nostalgia: Critical of the past, highlights issues prevalent during the period
- 80s nostalgia Is very popular
- It’s affirming & comforting
- Is a mirror to the present: looking back to the past for the hope for the future
- “It is a reflection of the past as we want it to have been seen, as in the present”
I’m addressing to people who are into the 80s craze right now. Which is my generation and younger (Millenials and Gen Z). Who never really grew up in the 80s, and are getting a romanticised version of the era. Where the 80s nostalgia affects them in fashion, music, and film, design. People who look to the past for a sense of comfort & escapism, look for hope for a better future.
I also think this is a good opportunity to talk about the AIDS concern, because recently Singaporean HIV positive people are also going through this (because of a cyber attack which outed HIV patients.) I want to take a stance on how Singaporeans are just following trends without realising that they are repeating the wrong side of history.
User Character Profile
(((((don’t mind me just using characters from Back To The Future because it’s an 80s theme..)))))
- A reflective & deconstructive illustration of the 80s
- The illustration will seemingly be about the reflective nostalgia of the 80s
- To criticise the reflection of nostalgia, I will be highlighting the 80s AIDs crisis
The common theme of my thumbnails is of a young person enjoying the cultural products of the 80s, dancing around like Cindy Lauper, watching the “80s” shows on TV, while the “older” people are suffering from the crisis and problems of the era.
From my thumbnails, this particular one is my favourite because it’s got a dark humour element. The idea of this concept is…Freddie Mercury on an IV drip, performing his last performance.
The way that I would be showcasing the obsession is by the audience (of millennials) all having their phones up to record the performance, disregarding that he is slowly dying from AIDs.
I chose Freddie Mercury because till this day, he is still very iconic (eg. Bohemian Rhapsody Movie) He is also one of the more famous celebrities who have passed away from the 80s AIDS crisis, which would help me in my critical narrative on nostalgia.