Russian artist Olia Lialina created her browser-based artwork My Boyfriend Came Back From The War in 1996. It is considered one of the first works of internet art, and tells the fragmented story of a woman and her boyfriend’s attempts to communicate and connect after he returns from fighting in a war.

Lialina’s work has been subject to many re-workings by different artists. Birren’s version takes Lialina’s as a starting point in both visual and textual terms. Here, however, a different story of a different soldier in a different war unfolds from Lialina’s opening line. Unlike Lialina’s pioneering use of the internet as an artistic medium, Birren’s use of technology is deliberately low-fi - the film is silent; Postit notes simulate the frames of a browser, with the film processed to look like it was made in the 1970s.

Freya Birren was born in Norway in 1979. She lives in Belmullet, Ireland.

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