Based on the experiment analysis of behaviour developed by psychologist Dr. Burrhus Frederic Skinner in the 1950’s, Selfie
Rats deploys a three-stages experiment with a group of rodents. Trained with a sugar distribution system connected to a camera, a group of rats produces images of themselves by interacting with the photographic apparatus. At first driven by the trained compulsion to eat sugar, they eventually just playfully snap pictures. By echoing addictive behaviour engineered by social media companies to keep users captive, Lignier humorously addresses what cultural theorist Yves Citton calls ecology of attention, a coercive system, which commodifies our attentiveness with a mechanism based on sheer pleasure.