Mock it, love it, hate it: the museum selfie is here. With the invention of the Selfie Stick, museums in NYC are adopting a ban. Though we haven’t seen any selfie-sticks around WCMA, we do have a problem with selfies having close encounters with the art. Particularly with this piece:
George Segal, Couple in Open Doorway, 1977
This piece sits on the landing of the stairwell leading up into our galleries. Though I appreciate the relational quality visitors share with the sculpture, we’re running into the trouble of visitors stepping into the sculpture for photo ops.
Currently, I am drafting some language to go into a label, placed at the floor to bring more attention to the line of tape creating a boundary for the work. I would appreciate any feedback from fellow writers/museum enthusiasts!
Here is what I have so far:
Please take all selfies on this side of the line
Please take all selfies a safe distance from the artwork
Looking photogenic? We think so too. But keep your distance. The line on the floor will do.
Mind the humans: Please take your selfies on this side of the line
We just need a little space to settle this. Please stay behind the line.
Acknowledging the Selfie seems to be an informal and relational interaction with the visitor, so I am tempted to use a more informal tone. Does your museum have a similar sign? How do you negotiate selfies with your visitors?
To be fair, staying on the proper side of the line still lends itself to a nice selfie composition: