Morgan Ray

Morgan Ray

Morgan Ray is a Los Angeles based photographer, videographer, designer, and director who criticizes and transforms the modern transgender experience. Speaking the language of contemporary advertising, Morgan leverages the problematics of representation within media and fashion through acutely satirical photographic and video work, using her own body as the subject. Unraveling the “transgender reveal” trope of the mid-1990s and early-2000s, the construction and ultimate dissolution of illusion is paramount to her process. Morgan’s work is often deeply personal, helping her to process the realities and controversies of trans existence.

Artist Location: Los Angeles, CA


soundpedro 2021 participation: N/A

Proposed work as accepted for soundpedro 2021:
Dinner for One
Indulging the now widely-known internet video genre ASMR, Dinner for One (2020) is a video short that documents one woman’s earnest but unsettling attempt at connecting with her internet followers, lovingly referred to as her “uglies.” Ava, a single, middle aged Australian woman with a flair for bold prints and an unfortunate technological ineptitude, presents her dissatisfying didactic take on a simple meal preparation.

At its core, Dinner for One is a straightforward exploration of modern web-based performance. This short but sweet video playfully pokes fun at the prolific ASMR community, using sounds and visuals to call attention to the precarity of the (online) persona. Pronounced—even tacky—post-production additions half-assedly imitate YouTube-style editing. Employing poorly recorded foley, Dinner for One balances uncomfortable, out-of-sync editing with try-hard humor to create a uniquely anticlimactic soundscape that denies the audience the sensorial pleasure of true ASMR. Additionally, conspicuous audio mixing and editing undermine the believability of any audio being diegetic. The lack of visual and sonic continuity work in conjunction to forcibly remove the audience from the video window, calling into question what happens outside of the constructed frame, effectively dismantling the veneer of the video set. Dinner for One is an experiment in cultivated illusion, relying heavily on the sensory power of sound-making to construct and collapse facade.

Return to Artists Past & Present page

Posted in Artists.