Oxford Dictionaries have officially given in to the rise of the Selfie (also known as selfy), introducing it to their lexicon as “a photograph that one has taken of oneself, typically one taken with a webcam and uploaded to a social media website”.
Although selfies go back to the 1800s (Chemist Robert Cornelius took his first selfie in 1839, while Grand Duchess Anastasia Nikolaevna of Russia took her first selfie using a portable Kodak Bownie Box camera in 1913 ), but the rise of the digital selfies is quite recent (Justin Bieber, Michelle Obama, and even the Pope are now huge fans). They’ve taken over the globe in 2013 with giant social media platform Instagram providing photo-editing and sharing services. A simple hashtag search for #selfie on Instagram this morning revealed over 51,706,771 posts compared to less than 10,200,000 in January 2013.
Being an instagram lover myself, I’m quite excited that the selfie movement is finally getting acknowledged (in London of all places). London’s Moving Image Contemporary Art Fair has just launched the “National #Selfie Gallery” which showcases a collection of selfies in the form of videos from emerging artists from Europe and the United States. “The gallery explores the range of performativity, personality, authenticity, and expression inherent in the #selfie form, from the instant gratification of its creation to the popularity contests of its publication.”
“A Visual Diary” is how a selfie is described in a recent New York Times article. I tend to agree (heart shaped-eyes, pouting lips, bad hair day, empty stomach, employee of the month, posed- selfies all included).
I hesitated to share the below, but here we are: a somewhat weird video from one of the participating artists for your pleasure! (I’ve only seen this in movies but the geek in me is not one to judge) . Morning Selfie anyone?