These days, anyone with an iPhone can be a photographer.
Video Photographer Erica Scourti’s So Like You display at The Photographers Gallery uses online networks to explore the role of the photographer today. As people are fast becoming their own personal photographers – and with more and more very similar photos being posted online every day – Scourti asks if it is possible to maintain individuality and originality anymore.
Scourti put her old photo archive through Google image search and contacted people who had uploaded very visually similar images. She asked them to send her more images with tags of friends, captions of the moments in the photo, the location and the date of when the photo was taken – truly entering into a creative exchange. The resulting work tries to make sense of what value and originality mean in a visual culture that is so dominated by images shared on social media.
In a world where creativity is increasingly democratised – where everyone can be their own photographer and capture their own special moments – this exhibition demonstrates the blurred lines between professionals and snap-shot amateurs. It left us asking what the role of the career photographer will be in the future.