I share therefore I am

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The other day I was trying to figure out why I belong to a social network where I share my photos with strangers and them with me.

So my conclusion is the following: “I share therefore I am”. This phrase was established in the current decade, the 10’s, replacing (was it really replaced?) the previous “I think therefore I am” of René.

For instance, if a photo exists only in the folders of your mobile device or on your laptop’s hard disk, its existence has zero objective value and X subjective value. But if this picture has been shared on a social network, it automatically acquires objective value which is measured on likes, shares etc, and in many cases the value increases rapidly.

Back to the process of sharing our pictures, where there is nothing wrong in my opinion, social networks are the blank space of our days, they are the place where our works find recognition by the interconnected humanity. Somehow, regardless of the content, the exhibition space or the art gallery has lost its materialistic substance and has been transferred mostly to the web, which is now the host of our photographs and their value.

Consequently the majority of photographers (eventually are we all photographers?) don’t print their works, though they are all sharing them online. In our fast paced lives, millions of photographs get uploaded every hour, thus their lifetime is depending on algorithms that are programmed to keep them in the “front page” of our busy timelines for a specific amount of time. After the “front page” our photos are rarely seen, which proves that irrespective of the digital photography’s indestructible nature (though there is some skepticism about this too – check here and here) the way the social media networks have been build promotes the ephemeral.

So the question that inevitably comes in is whether keeping a digital archive maintains duration on time and of course the same question arises in for our printed projects also. So what is the purpose behind sharing photos on a social network if not to maintain our digital presence gaining ephemeral objective value. In the end we don’t have to forget the possibility of a forthcoming digital blackout that all our digital files will become useless and will essentially lose their subjective and objective value.

So in my quest to perpetuate my work or to give a fleeting publicity, I decided to redistribute 10 of my most popular shots I shared in 2016 on my instagram account. So in the following pictures taken in a different place and time there isn’t a storyline(or there is?).

Thank you very much,

Babis Giannikakis