Of course, social networks such as Facebook and Twitter don’t stop when it comes to art. Manuals, workshops and literature bear witness to a bustling branch of communications and marketing sectors, as well as a need for orientation among art and cultural practitioners. Some advantages of a thoughtfully curated social media presence are obvious. For art museums as well as galleries, a stimulating and inspiring appearance can increase the number of users attracted to an exhibition.
Well thought out and regular posts form a link to visitors and collectors, and can ideally be a form of starting a dialogue with them. This is countered by questions about the time and money invested, about the point in giving a fleeting virtual impression before the desired real visit, and eventually also by the fast pace of these new technologies. The fact that museums and galleries are interested in good marketing strategies and networking is obvious. But how do expressions such as ‘routine care’, ‘well thought out posts or ‘controlled topic editorials’ suit the activity and temperament of an artist. Is a degree of disciplined social media management required today, even for highly creative people? For some superstars of the scene, the new media have long been a self-rotating wheel in a marketing apparatus already running at full-speed.
Published in: Ensuite Nr. 140, 2014 / By Philipp Koller
Their regular tweets and photos give about 17,000 followers updated information about Koons and his activities. Congenial, personal, but not too intimate apparently actually posted by Koons himself; like taken from a textbook. Gerhard Richter is also represented on all channels. On Twitter, 22,000 users follow him; on Facebook 56,000. Unlike Koons’ entries, Richter’s appear more controlled and lead one to think he is using an external management. Observing Cindy Sherman, one encounters neither her own official website nor her own official social media profile. Instead of maintaining the pages herself, she puts her virtual appearance completely in the hands of her community, which, as do the community of Koons and Richter, sets up on Facebook Fan Page. So Sherman is closest to the original idea of the social networks - no control, but self regulation by the community.
But you can also go completely without Facebook and Twitter at this level. Thomas Schütte does not need these platforms. And Jonathan Meese is also not represented online through Artist Profile. But in Meese’s case you should take a second look, because actually a striking number of profiles bear that name. What catches the eye is, for example, the unfavourably photographed mid-forties woman from Braunschweig. She likes the music of rapper Lil' Mama and shares, among other interests: ‘A motorist was blinded, by your face’ or ‘70 things you must not say during sex and 16 more’. Let it be understood, that these interest details link you to other regularly maintained Facebook pages. Under the keyword ‘Jonathan Meese’ Facebook’ you also find a funeral director who is a fan of Werder Bremen, a Death Metal fan with a flair for cemeteries, and about ten other bizarre profiles. The Meese’ profiles and the underlying complexity amuse, surprise, shock and offend. We look for possible interpretations: does Meese just lead us to the futility of an information culture, in which a burp is worth an applause? Is he playing with our voyeurism? Is it the anarchist who rejects any uniformity in art? Is he simply crazy? Ultimately the profiles provoke a variety of reactions and questions, which regardless of sensitivities can only be provoked by art. Could this also be the alternative to a market-oriented use of social networks in art; to use them as a further platform for artistic creativity?
On the website of Jeff Koons, each image is linked to several social media channels. And who expects to get in touch with the artist via e-mail or request form has to deal with Twitter after clicking the contact button.
I like them: Two of the bizarre facebook profiles for «Jonathan Meese»
Perfect Marketing: A recent facebook post by Jeff Koons
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