Online exhibition opening as part of The Wrong Digital Biennale. unnamed


Curated by Leah Schrager


Artists/Instagrams: @armani_stone, @misschelsey.m, @colbykline, @_isheq, @madame__ette, @olindafitguru, @notcamdamage, @nude_yogagirl, @raquelduartt_10, @sarahsandin, @slawada,@tazsangel_ab, @sita.uncensored, @thuglifefitbaby, @thevirtualgeisha, @sarahlove420


Nu Matr-E-archs presents a collection of works by Instagram Models who are fostering a new form of 21st century digital female performance art. The female body has been an ongoing subject in male-authored work and appropriation. While female performance art emerged in the 1960’s as a live art form, the internet now offers a new platform for women in and out of the art world to explore body empowerment. The artists in this show have been found through Instagram and selected because they model, author, photograph, and distribute their own images (free of “man hands”), their work is artistically interesting and unique (often using Instagram as their primary platform), and they embrace eroticism and female sexuality as an element in their work. In presenting this collection of female-empowered works, Nu Matr-E-archs hopes to reshape the expectations for what women are and aren’t allowed to do in society, art, and …


In 2015 I co-curated the online art show (which was subsequently featured in the April ’15 issue of Art Forum, amongst others) – it was organized mostly in response to concurrent events of male appropriation in fine art and presented the online works of art world-female-identifying artists. Since then I have become more interested in the varied ways that women present themselves when they set their own standards (potentially free of art world standards) and express sexuality on their own playground. Instagram is a flowering opportunity for female performance, as I recently discussed in my article on Instagram Models, Self-Made Supermodels, in Rhizome. This show provides a follow-up to that essay by presenting the work of Instagram Models in an artistic context for critical consideration.


It also extends what began in by addressing the other primary manifestation of male authored work: photography in fashion and art. Nu Matr-E-archs was named in reference to Nu Muses, a prototypical “man hands” event in which industry male photographers seek to have their photographs of agency-represented female models accepted in the art world taking place during Art Basel 2016. By curating Nu Matr-E-archs, I hope to encourage discussion about the differences between the “muse” and “matr-E-arch” paradigms and what these differences might mean for women, art, and society.


Contact email: numatrearchs [at] gmail [dot] com


Extended curatorial statement here.