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  • It was so cool, I died.


  • I created this project, this photographic performance art

  • project, a number of years ago.

  • At one point, I was so exhausted.

  • I was traveling all night, and I sort of like fell over.

  • I'm so dead, like dead, exhausted.

  • And my friend took a picture.

  • I posted it.

  • And for some reason, people were like,

  • this is just really funny.


  • I thought, yeah, I mean, that's cool,

  • but if I'm going to put something out into the world,

  • and then also call it art or talk

  • about it through the lens of art,

  • I want it to be meaningful and powerful and enjoyable.

  • And I was like, I can't just take a silly picture.

  • So I created this world of STEFDIES.

  • I never want it to be confused with that I'm

  • making fun of mortality.

  • STEFDIES is very much a celebration of life,

  • and being in the moment, and celebrating this world

  • that we live in.


  • Anyone who's sort of doing something different,

  • I think it's just a heartfelt reaction

  • to wanting to be included and wanting

  • to have a seat at the table.

  • And I feel that sometimes when there's

  • this whitewashing on social media and on Instagram,

  • it excludes a lot of people.

  • And I want to remember my travels.

  • I want to be in my photos.

  • I want to make it cool, but I don't

  • want to feel bad that I'm not doing

  • it the right way, or the socially accepted way,

  • or in the beautiful kind of way.

  • I've been on trips where they were just

  • concerned with going places where they could

  • get a picture for social media.

  • It wasn't behind I want to see this beautiful fountain,

  • or I want to meet these cool local people.

  • It was more like, I have to go to this place

  • to get the photos so I can show people.

  • I would just walk away and go explore.

  • And I'd like-- be like, it's been like 30 minutes.

  • Are you going to-- do you want to go up there?

  • No, no, no, no, we're done.

  • I'm like, I can't.

  • And so there's so much time in trying

  • to get the photo that you don't actually exist in the place

  • that you're going to.

  • It's just sad because you're missing out

  • on the beautiful place.

  • Be in the moment.

  • Be there.

  • I think it's actually deeply ingrained in me

  • to learn about other cultures, also

  • learn about myself through other cultures and through travel.

  • I didn't view the world through just one

  • lens of being in America.

  • I mean, I also had the culture of my Japanese grandmother

  • and my Italian grandfather.

  • And so when you're surrounded by otherness,

  • it is just ingrained in you that you're no better or no less

  • than anyone else.

  • You're just you.

  • Expand yourself.

  • And the best way to expand yourself, I think,

  • is by expanding your mind through experience.


It was so cool, I died.

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Posing dead brings life to one artist's travel photos

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    林宜悉 posted on 2020/10/23
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