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Saatchi Gallery exhibition will explore selfies as an art form

Monday 23 January 2017

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In March, the Saatchi Gallery is set to open ‘From Selfie to Self-Expression,’ which will explore the art of selfies, featuring well-known self-portraits from artists such as Vincent van Gogh, Tracey Emin, Rembrandt, June Calypso, Kutlu? Ataman and Velazquez, as well as selfies from the digital age that have become iconic. These will include a selfie of Barack Obama, David Cameron and former Danish Prime Minister Helle Thorning-Schmidt, as well as a shot from the Academy Awards that actor Benedict Cumberbatch photobombed.

According to the gallery, “The show will be the world’s first exhibition exploring the history of the selfie from Velazquez to the present day, while celebrating the truly creative potential of a form of expression often derided for its inanity.” The exhibition will highlight the importance of the modern selfie as an art form, for it marks a shift in society, with people using digital technology as self-expression.


Saatchi is also collaborating with Huawei to commission 10 young British photographers to provide contributions, and is launching the #SaatchiSelfie competition, which invites people to submit their most creative selfies for a chance to be featured in the show. The international competition encourages entrants to express themselves, to be experimental and innovative, and to explore the creative potential of the selfie today. A panel of artists will choose the winners, with a shortlist of ten winners receiving Huawei’s latest smart phone, and the overall winner will win a trip of a lifetime with a world-renowned Leica photographer, who is yet to be revealed.

From Selfie to Self-Expression’ will run at the Saatchi Gallery from 31st March to 30th May 2017. The overall winner of the #SaatchiSelfie competition will be announced at the launch of the exhibition on 31st March.