Funny Photos Give the Illusion of Historical Paintings Snapping Selfies

It's not uncommon to see a selfie anymore – this photographic phenomena has permeated our culture. But you know who wasn't taking these types of pictures? The subjects featured in art history. No, long before the camera even existed, people sat hours on end for an elaborately-painted portrait. That was, however, until the handiwork of Olivia Muus. The Denmark-based art director has works from the 17th and 18th century snapping their own photo in her series titled #museumofselfie.

In each image, Muus positions a real hand holding an iPhone in front of a painting at a museum. She's cleverly placed it so that the scale matches the artwork, and this creates the illusion that these 2D people are somehow taking their own self portrait. There's no Photoshop used in this series – just two cameras and a gracious hand model.

So far, there are only a few portraits featured in #museumofselfie, but we'd love to see more of this amusing mashup of history and contemporary culture.

Olivia Muus website
via [Reddit]

Sara Barnes

Sara Barnes is a Staff Editor at My Modern Met, Manager of My Modern Met Store, and co-host of the My Modern Met Top Artist Podcast. As an illustrator and writer living in Seattle, she chronicles illustration, embroidery, and beyond through her blog Brown Paper Bag and Instagram @brwnpaperbag. She wrote a book about embroidery artist Sarah K. Benning titled 'Embroidered Life' that was published by Chronicle Books in 2019. Sara is a graduate of the Maryland Institute College of Art. She earned her BFA in Illustration in 2008 and MFA in Illustration Practice in 2013.
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