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Ever wished a stranger could break up with someone for you? Ever needed to tell your platonic friend that you're completely in love with them but can't bring yourself to do it? Artist/actress/writer Miranda July's new app "Somebody" lets strangers deliver messages verbally, meaning that you can legitimately say "At least I broke up with you face to face".
To accompany the app's launch, July directed a film for Miu Miu's acclaimed Women's Tales series. Shown at the Venice Film Festival along with So Yong Kim's Spark and Light, Somebody is a ten minute short that explores the tenderness of modern relationships and light-heartedly demonstrates the app's function.
One of the reasons that the Somebody film looks so good is because the cinematographer who worked on it is Sebastian Wintero, the man responsible for Sia's incredible Maddie Ziegler-inspired Chandelier video; another reason is that July worked hard to carefully integrate Miu Miu clothes into the film, making for well-dressed characters and a stylish aesthetic.
The app works by sending a message intended for you to the nearest Somebody user, who then has to track you down to deliver the information. July says about the app: "Half-app / half-human, "Somebody" is a far-reaching public art project that incites performance and twists our love of avatars and outsourcing — every relationship becomes a three-way. The antithesis of the utilitarian efficiency that tech promises, here, finally, is an app that makes us nervous, giddy, and alert to the people around us."
Interested? Go and get it here.
Follow Thomas Gorton on Twitter here @angstromhoot