The Facebook Portrait Project

A contemporary art project and social exercise.

A contemporary art research project from 2013 as part of my Masters of Fine Art in Digital Media at the University of Malta.

The (Facebook) Portrait Project was a contemporary art project which made part of research for an MA of Fine Arts in Digital Media at the University of Malta. It investigated the nature of personal and collective identity, gender equality and how we associate ourselves through contemporary depictions of a collective profile picture. One inspiring theme was Virilio’s statement about the “loss of human essence and a disintegration of a whole unity through technological development”.

The project consisted of a now defunct Facebook group in which users who joined were automatically taking part in a social exercise of portrait creation by becoming one ‘layer’ of a portrait. Each of the final thirteen portraits was made up through a digital combination of ten profile pictures of 10 consecutive joining members. Participants were tagged on their respective portrait and asked to share their reactions.

The study researched the aura of the portrait through a social media context were identity is very much blurred into a myriad of images and texts. This continuous bombardament leads us to ‘make up’ our own understanding of identity and the blurred boundaries of individuality.

Size A4
Medium Digital photography
Collection Private Collection