In my latest photo series, The Bully Pulpit, I investigate the social phenomenon of cyberbullying and the public profiles of people who attempt to bully me. The images represent my response to the hateful people who waste their time using the internet as
a weapon to get me to stop creating my work.
I photograph myself costumed like the people who’ve attempted to bully me. Finding photos online, I recreated their images using wigs, clothing, and simple prosthetics, while small imperfections mirror the fallacy that the internet will shield their identities. Finally, I overlay the parodies with transcripts of the bullying comments, almost as if I were “subtweeting” them.
My inspiration for The Bully Pulpit was the thousands of people who wrote mean-spirited comments about me in emails, tweets, Instagram posts, blogs and online comments sections when Wait Watchers was published. If I responded to them with text, the bullies would delete my words. But I realized that as an image cannot be removed from the internet, if I responded photographically then my response could never be deleted.
Haley Morris-Cafiero is part performer, part artist, part provocateur, part activist and uses a camera to record these actions. Originally from the United States, she is now living in the UK permanently.
Haley’s photographic work has been shown in traditional and experimental exhibitions all over the world. Her photographs have been published in many stories in online and print media sites and television shows such as The New York Times, Le Monde and CBS This Morning. Born in Atlanta, she is a graduate of the University of North Florida, where she earned a BA in Photography and a BFA in Ceramics in 1999. Nominated for the Prix Pictet in 2014 and a 2016 Fulbright finalist, she holds a MFA from the University of Arizona in Art. She is a Senior Lecturer of Photography at the University of Northampton.