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Appreciation post : towards an art history of Instagram

ISBN: 9780520398771
Format: Paperback
Publisher: *University Of California Press
Origin: US
Release Date: May, 2024

Book Details

What does an art history of Instagram look like? Appreciation Post reveals how Instagram shifts long-established ways of interacting with images. Tara Ward argues Instagram is a structure of the visual, which includes not just the process of looking, but what can be seen and by whom. She examines features of Instagram use, including the effect of scrolling through images on a phone, the skill involved in taking an “Instagram-worthy” picture, and the desires created by following influencers, to explain how the constraints imposed by Instagram limit the selves that can be displayed on it. The proliferation of technical knowledge, especially among younger women, revitalizes on Instagram the myth of the masculine genius and a corresponding reinvigoration of a masculine audience for art. Ward prompts scholars of art history, gender studies, and media studies to attend to Instagram as a site of visual expression and social consequence. Through its insightful comparative analysis and acute close reading, Appreciation Post argues for art history’s value in understanding the contemporary world and the visual nature of identity today.