William Cunningham

William Cunningham
BA (Hons) Fine Art // DJCAD ‘20

William’s work focuses on humanity at the intersection of the digital and physical worlds. Working predominantly with conceptual portraiture, he is interested in how the digital landscape affects the worth of images and of ourselves – with his trans experience casting a unique light on the many ways we capture and communicate identity. He seeks to acknowledge the mark that the digital revolution has left on us all, while telling human stories.

“Images help us understand ourselves and the place we occupy in the world. The invention of the camera told us that images were not timeless, and perspective is not singular. The digital camera took away the physicality of an image, turning life to information, distorting an image’s value.

The internet is a digital reproduction of reality. The ubiquity of screens and instant connection of the internet has devalued our relationship with images. As we as people are more and more defined by our connection to the digital reality of the internet, we lose sight of what defines us and our worth in the physical reality.

The Instagram hashtag #feltcutemightdeletelater, is an example of this disassociation between ourselves digitally and physically. Full of selfies, with varying levels of awareness of their place online, these easily ignored self-portraits are all a product of people searching for self-worth from the faceless vacuum that is the internet.

My current series takes it’s name from this hashtag. Each piece is a selfie that is intrinsically self-conscious by belonging to the tag. Aware of the space it consumes, yet willing to negate it’s existence at the notion of not being appreciated enough. Painted on an electric neon background with gestural, impasto brushstrokes to ground the images in reality, while also tying them to the digital buzz of the images’ source. These pieces are made to be seen in person. No longer deletable, their worth now defined by the space they physically occupy in the world”.

William is a member of the GENERATORprojects gallery, and has exhibited with them since 2016.


Oil on board
14.5 x 14.5 cm each
£120 each

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2016 – 2020
BA (Hons) Fine Art, Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art and Design, Dundee.


Sadgrads, Online.
The Social Distance Project, online.
DJCAD Degree Show, online.
Then & Now, DJCAD, Dundee.

2016 – 2019
Generator’s Members Show(s)