Liz Tobin

The Internet Of Things

The Internet of Things

Turns out, beyond the instant gratification of Reddit feeds, gifs and memes, the internet has a backbone. That backbone is e-commerce. Whenever you click to purchase a product, something, somewhere, moves. For most people, that somewhere is a warehouse in central England. I look to document the changing way we consume - moving from High Street to home delivery, focusing on a huge swath of middle England known as ‘The Golden Triangle’ - The logistical heart of the UK.

This so-called Golden Triangle of logistics is flanked by the M1, M6 and M42 motorways, and encompasses Northamptonshire, Warwickshire and Leicestershire with parts of Derbyshire and Staffordshire. From here, you can access 85% of the British population within 4.5 hours - the legal limit a HGV driver can travel without a break.

The thirst for same and next day deliveries has resulted in huge parks of windowless boxes dotting the countryside, clad in bands of sky blues and buffered with bucolic greens. Pixelated in place, the architecture is designed to blend the warehouses into their physical surroundings, thereby concealing their existence and merging with the intangible nature of the internet age.

Here, I utilise the same process of online product photography - with commodities shot and isolated onto a plain background - to highlight the infrastructure we all now use and to show a contrast to this often hidden aspect of modern life which is increasingly problematic, especially in terms if workers’ rights. 

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