SOCIAL MEDIA EXHIBITIONS
The #selfie project is an ongoing online exhibition of daily macro self portraits taken with a smart phone and a lens excavated from a disk drive. Using the lens manufactured for reading disks as a macro photography lens is a classic maker culture project which becomes more poignant as disks and their drives become increasingly obsolete. Using this DIY camera mod to create “#selfies”—which may be the epitome of low art—ironically gives them visual indicators of fine art images. The macro perspective and the short depth of field provide a level of abstraction and interest through variations of detail; the resulting images are rather unusual selfies. As the modern experience involves consuming most images via small screens and social media, I consider this exhibition to be as valid as any physical manifestation in a traditional setting. It also has a wider potential reach than a gallery exhibition, and allows for more accessible forms of communication between artist and viewer.
Hair was a personal experiment mainly concerning my experience with social media and my own feminine expression. In a place where we only reveal our best selves and notions of the ideal have room to germinate, most people experience a decline in overall well-being as a result of social media use. My intent with this video was to exhibit a gently subversive act to prove that I didn’t need my long hair to feel good about my appearance, online and otherwise. This was a generally successful venture, although I recognize my use of other generally feminine indicators to counter-balance my gender expression. This experiment also managed to rob me almost completely of experiencing people’s genuine live reactions to this drastic personal change. Social media mediates our experience of most big events in our lives and social circles. It would be tacky to send a wedding invitation via Facebook, but it is likely they way one learns of engagements. Throughout this experiment, as much as I enjoyed the online attention I regretted missing the in-person reactions.