Andy Warhol’s £6m Selfie And How We Can All Now Be Famous For 15 Minutes



Andy Worhol


By Tom van Laer and Stefania Farace in The Conversation.


One day in 1963, Andy Warhol walked into a New York photobooth and took what have become the world’s most famous selfies. One of these trailblazing self-portraits has just been sold at a Sotheby’s auction for just over £6m.

These selfies perfectly suited Warhol’s vision of the pop art era of the late 1950s and 1960s – they are quintessentially all-American, democratic and mechanical. Though photobooth pictures could not go viral like social media pictures can now, the use of a photobooth to make art was, in 1963, fiercely innovative and added to the aura of technical invention that surrounded Warhol, just like it surrounds selfies and social media now.

Selfies are the holy grail of social media: self-portraying photographs that are posted on a social networking site and tell stories that aim to engage large numbers of people. Our latest research has revealed three things that can help you to take pictures that are worth – if not millions of pounds – at least a thousand words, and without you having to risk your life for them.


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