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The Spain-born

Outletcity 1176

The Spain-born, London-educated artist Amalia Ulman is justly famous for a long- running Instagram campaign in which she pretended she was undergoing plastic surgery in preparation to be an actress in Los Angeles when she was actually recovering from a difficult accident. Social media portends to be the truth—we believe what our friends put on Facebook and Instagram. But in reality, it’s never the full story, and it could always be an out-and-out fabrication, as Ulman’s work showed.
Ulman presents Gucci’s GG Blooms print as part of her social media pageant. But in this act, the artist takes on the role of a New Wave film protagonist, posing with the Gucci clutch in self-portraits that are complex in their trickery. We glance askew through mirrors; we think we see the selfie, but the self is never there. Ulman’s passport, laying open on the table, is just a hint at life as it takes place outside of the screen. The Gucci brand overlayed on the image suggests advertising, the opening of a dramatic commercial, but we know this is something else entirely.


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