The selfie is a phenomenon. The first photographic self-portrait was taken by American photographer Robert Cornelius in 1839, but artists have been painting self-portraits as early as 1433. But in more recent years, a flurry of selfies taken for MySpace, Facebook and Instagram saw the term 'Selfie' being coined by photographer Jim Krause in 2005, and then becoming one of Times Magazine's "top ten buzzwords" by the end of 2012.
In-keeping with the historical signifance of the self-portrait, and with the more on-trend excitment surrounding the selfie itself, Cass Art is delighted to host an new exhibition brought to you by KAOS: Selfies, at The Art Space in Cass Art Kingston. Selfies is an exhibition that is part of the KAOS (Kingston Artists' Open Studios) Art trail and will be open on the weekends of the 6th & 13th June.
Set up in 2010 to try and bring together artists from different disciplines, KAOS has grown to include over 60 members. They have had over 15 exhibitions since they formed and some of the artists have exhibited most recently in Oldenburg, Germany - Kingston’s twinned city.
We stopped ask a couple of questions of Hanna Ten Doornkaat, artist, event co-ordinator and an original member of KAOS. Hanna was born in Heidelburg, Germany but lives and works in London finding suitable venues, raising funds, curating and setting up exhibitions for KAOS. She has an MA in sculpture though mainly practices drawing which she describes as performances.
Hi Hanna! What inspired the Selfies exhibition?
Well a group of us from KAOS went out to the Tate Modern to see the Marlene Dumas: Image as Burden exhibition there. As we were walking through, I just thought wouldn't it be great if we did a self portrait exhibition at KAOS.
Tell us about your ‘Selfie' that's exhibited in the show?
I work mainly in drawing, and have been using a lot of translucent paper at the moment. My ‘Selfie’ is inspired by Andy Warhol as you can see; I drew the original image on the left and then edited it and reprinted them on baking paper. I have an MA in sculpture but for the last two years I’ve worked mainly with paper and drawing, which I consider performances.
Having seen some examples of Hanna’s work you can notice there are a lot of carefully placed pencil marks, as though each one has been meticulously planned out. She describes making them as almost obsessive; each drawing can take between 1-2 weeks to complete, as they are often comprised of many layers of paint, sometimes sanded and repainted.
You are warmly invited to the Private View, hosted at The Art Space in Cass Art Kingston, on Friday 5th June from 6:30pm to 8pm.
Selfies is open during Cass Art Kingston on Saturday 6th, Sunday 7th, Saturday 13th and Sunday 14th June, from 11am-5pm. You can also view it in the week by appointment if you email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Find out more about the exhibition here.