If you didn’t already think of her as a genius, check out her IG feed. Maybe you are thinking awesomeness on digital social channels is only for the digital-native younger person. Think again. Always the shrewdest observer and commentator of popular culture, Cindy takes on the craze of the moment: the IG feed as a staged narcissistic declaration of self-branding.
Cindy Sherman is a true shape-shifting master. Her photographs in which she appears as the only subject do not depict herself. “I don’t see it that way, no,” she says. Rather, Sherman exposes how culture shapes appearances, imploding such enforced conformity from within. The American photographer and film director has assumed an endless number of identities and has risen to become one of the most influential photographers of her generation and one of the most prominent figures in contemporary art.
Now taking her art onto the modern digital platform, Sherman’s photography exposes our selfie-obsessed generation. She uses various apps, such as Facetune and Photoshop, that are usually meant to make an image look prettier, but in the hands of Sherman, she has managed to tease highly unorthodox results. The women she has created have inflamed skin, warped noses, piercing eyes. Occasionally, identical ghosts burst from their heads or pattern their bodies. Nevertheless, they seem knowable and lovable. Possibly due to the intimate nature of Instagram or because they have been built with tools that aim to serve desires we can identify, Sherman’s self-portraits embody understandable intentions that have gone awry.
Here we have someone at the very top of her game — the very best galleries, the very best museums — a legend now at the age of 63, taking her sharpest of sticks to a genre that so many aspire to use as a tool of gauzy self-promotion. No, not Cindy. Her IG is something completely different, something that humbles us mortals. She also wins the best captions award. Check out her groundbreaking transgressive digital work here.