It feels like self-portraiture is a bit out of hand. This is especially true in a world of Facebook profile pictures serving as our public faces and the ability to create a live photo record of your life. There”s some debate on the issue: some see taking a selfie as narcissistic, a symbol of decadence and decaying moral values. Other see it as a method of self-expression where people can be both subject and photographer controlling how the world sees them. In reality, it”s probably a little from Column A and B.
Whatever you think of selfies, you sometimes do have to hand it to people who take the selfie game to the next level. Such was the case of Reddit user Fender2322″s friend, who remains anonymous thus far. His artfully staged selfies are not only perfectly lit, costumed, and shot, but also have a tongue-in-cheek quality that gently lampoons selfie culture and social media.
These aren”t selfies in the traditional, holding-the-camera-yourself sense. They are self-portraits posted to social media, so we think that counts.
The subject of the photos, the anonymous friend, used them as his profile pictures on Facebook. In the pictures, he portrays himself as a brilliant professor, a rugged construction worker, a noirish detective, a slayer of sharks, and as Atlas carrying the world. These heroic figures are the bent truth that people post about themselves online. They embody the embellishments that make them look smarter, richer, and better than they actually are.
The satirical edge comes out upon closer look. The formulas on the professor”s board are quite simplistic (and result in an answer of 69). The construction vehicle is parked in a garage. The dead shark and world hefted by Atlas are clearly inflatable, weighing nothing.
So, what are these? Are they art, satire, or just a plain old runaway train of narcissism? We may never know.