Thursday, November 19, 2015

Self-portraiture has long been considered a legitimate art form in the fields of painting and drawing, and to a lesser degree in photography as well, provided certain requirements are met. However, the popularization of social media and the camera phone has given birth to another term for photographic self-portrait; the selfie. While self-portraits are considered to be an art, selfie's are often considered frivolous and self-absorbed, with the most extreme critics even claiming that their popularity heralds the downfall of civilization. Why is this? Is it because selfies can be easily taken and shared by anyone, anywhere, at any time? Do we see accessibility as a threat to art? Why do we consider art to become any less legitimate when in the hands of the masses? Why do we consider the beauty if certain individuals worth immortalizing, but not so others? What defines when an artists becomes worthy of their title, and when a person becomes a work of art? The were questions I tried to explore with my final project, by presenting a book of selfies as a legitimate piece of fine art. I don't know the answers to all of these questions, or even that there are concrete ones, but I hope that my project will encourage others to ask them.

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