artist: Iza Pavlina
title: First Impressions / Self-portrait
media: vector drawings
dimensions: 200 x (7.6 x 10.2 cm)
The first impression is information that is formed on the basis of a first meeting with a person and makes up the mental image that affects our future perception and judgement of the individual. Studies show that only one tenth of a second is required for us to judge a person and form a fairly accurate opinion about them. The accuracy of the impression depends on both the observer and the target. First Impressions / Self-portrait is a series of two hundred small-scale vector drawings, the portraits of anonymous persons, upon whom I randomly came across while using various online video chat rooms. The work explores the reactions of random individuals caught up in the moment as they see an unknown person (i.e. me) on the Internet. Since the meeting is virtual and momentary, the stranger was able to perceive and judge me only on the basis of my appearance. In the instant of his first meeting with me, I froze the image of his reaction to me. I proceeded to explore my reactions to the frozen photographs of strangers by reliving some of them in the form of drawings. Each drawing takes time. Through the process of its formation, a special relationship to each stranger formed within me. The drawings placed together into a whole make up a kind of a mirrored self-portrait.