Creating self-portraits has increased in popularity in communal arts because it provides regular people pathways for self-expression and creates a feeling of empowerment. In communal art the main goal is to give the participants tools for expressing themselves through art practices without any requirement of previous qualifications. Everyone is entitled to make self-portraits and to be seen and make their voices heard.
The artworks in this slideshow are made in communal art workshops in Turku, which was the Cultural Capital of Europe in 2011 and hosted an innovative project called 2000 & 11 SELF-PORTRAITS. At the moment the work of self-portraits goes on in a Contemporary Self-Portraits project which creates artwork in Northern European communities. Now the coordinators of these projects at the Arts Academy of Turku University of Applied Sciences are planning a new project, Digital me, minä & jag.
Digital me, minä & jag will exhibit a vast number of self-portraits made by common people in project workshops, before this project and within in. The main objective is to disseminate the results of various self-portrait workshops to a larger audience and to provide a platform for new interactive workshops. The exhibition will give the participants the feeling of participation and belonging to the bigger picture, behind the borders of the community where the self-portraits have been made.
The Digital me, minä & jag project consists of collecting and creating artworks, developing the platform for interactive virtual exhibition and organising new workshops to create new innovative works for the exhibition.
In the DIGITAL 2015–2016 event, individual and communal self-portraits from Digital me, minä & jag, will be compiled into a larger interactive entity which chronicles the events and styles of our time and visual selves. A very realistic understanding of modern Nordic people – how we see ourselves and how we want to be seen – can be reached when observing the self-made portraits in various formats: photos, drawings, collages, videos, animations, written stories, comics as well as combinations of all these and more.
Digital me, minä & jag presents local self-portraits and encourages self-expression and exchange. Its participants are local communities in northern Europe, but its audiences will be found all over the world.