Open Letter

Dear reader,
I write this open letter in my mediocre german school english due to the fact to have noticed the english anouncement below ‚The Selfie Show: An Art Exhibition of Self-Portraits‘.

A selfie is not a self-portrait. Pointing a lense at oneself alone is not an artistic product named portrait. Its the opposite if you ask me. Even though some well known artists make use of this practice. Obviously what makes a selfie specific is that, that it is not specific at all. Its rather a tool that organizes social space.

Their might be considerable anthropologic reasons or Zeitgeist that makes this cultural technique popular or even an academic subject matter, but a selfie per se never takes account of the social production of a subject (self) nor of its artistic production (portrait). The announcement understating the further use of artist’s labour rather helps to create a capitalistic mass game. People choreograph something freebie, neutral, literally allowing to wave output nolens volens into a meta image. This meta image or superimage to which platformcreators, event makers, some curators invite is a naturalized form of false artistic democracy. Its so big that everybody has to belief in its power.

Dont let the abreviated use of notions and the joy of being included let you force into precarious labour. Rather add context to your work. Produce it as your unique and coherent form. Think about the value of your work and ask for an appropriate fee, credits. Yes, you are one of many, but dont let others gather ‚greatness‘ while you just get an insignificant share. Yes, I did take place in two of such shows and I persistently regret boths times. If you only see the choice between, ostentatious happy pseudo participation and no participation, than why dont you create your own useful and intensive strategy of publishing? Think about it before you send your selfies.


The Selfie Show: An Art Exhibition of Self-Portraits

Just submit one really great self-portrait photograph/jpeg to the Museum of New Art (MONA).

1) You don’t have to take the photo specifically for this event, you can use any self-portrait of yourself. Just send the best and most unique you have.
2) You may only upload 1 photo: jpeg dimensions rough guideline 300dpi or 2-5mb in size.
3) Cellphone ’selfies‘ may be submitted – even at a lower resolution – however, the image itself must be ‚great‘ and/or unique in its quality as a self-portrait.
4) Please include your name and current place of residence.

Send to:
Subject Line: The Selfie Show

[Include your own website if possible.]

Self-portraiture has been a staple of artistic practice for centuries. But … Is the selfie a new and legitimate art form? Has the selfie set itself apart from the self-portrait, ushering in a new style of artistic representation?

The reality of our personal identity is that it is not only fluid but also self-assigned. As individuals in the Digital Age, we have more control of the construction of our own identity than ever.

Deadline: September 1, 2014 @ midnight.

This exhibition will be installed at the Museum of New Art | Armada – opening September 21, 2014.!events/cbpa