Stars–they’re just like us! They take selflies and so do we. There are probably other similarities, but we haven’t heard of any. In a new photo series, however, the distinction between celebrity selfies and our own becomes a lot more blurry.
U.K. photographer Dan Rubin recently embarked on a project to mash-up celebrity selfie culture with its more anonymous analogue. In “Phonies,” the photographer shoots random people on the street holding a smartphone over their faces like the apple in Magritte’s “Son of Man,”, only these phones bear the famous faces of Kim Kardashian, Lily Allen, and Aaron Paul. It’s a neat trick that seems to hold a mirror up to society and display how we all want to be seen.
Rubin projects the camera-ready celebrity faces onto HTC One mini 2 phones, and hands them over to passersby who are probably all too eager to oblige. The photographer then positions the phones so the celebrity faces plastered onto them are seamlessly integrated with the outer-borough facial features of whoever is holding them. The resulting images offer a compelling commentary on who we think we are and who we want to be. Like lots of interesting projects, though, it leaves the even more compelling question of “But why?” for the viewer to grapple with.
Have a look through more of the images in the slides above.