The COVID-19 pandemic has already changed our lives and the way we perceive it. The outbreak has highlighted many issues in our societies and reawakened certain narratives - be it our health systems, the invisible workforce, the notion of a 'universal basic income' (UBI), privacy, and many others.
But it goes beyond that. We are living in an interconnected world in which we cannot abstract ourselves from our surroundings as preindustrial humans could. We have gone about conquering the planet and adapting it to our needs but looking at our present reality, with people in protective suits going around disinfecting our streets, our medium looks as unfriendly as if we failed our inhabiting mission.
As with other major issues like war, poverty, or climate change, this global pandemic is being shown in the media through cliches and in a formulaic manner. With the virulence of a virus, information about COVID-19 is spreading around the globe, leaving its mark in our minds, and it looks like the virus might be here to stay, affecting everyone, in every corner of the world.
The 'infodemic' nature of the virus' spread makes it difficult to comprehend and be part of the solution. What lessons do we draw from the outbreak and will they help us foresee future threats to our civilization? Will we be able to react quickly by isolating ourselves or taking other precautions? Do the global media help us understand the state we find ourselves in or are they reverting to the same tropes used to report on other issues that we faced before this all-encompassing crisis?
By using search engine results for the keywords 'coronavirus' and 'COVID-19' and photographing them through a traditional loupe I tried to force those questions, showing the infectious nature of the way we communicate about the global issues of our time.