Nude photography is a form of art that never dies. It has all the appeal and praise that general viewers crave, mainly for the beauty but also for the courageous effort that it takes to exhibit it. There is nothing else in the artistic world like it, a fact that is apparent when taking factors like exploitation and vulgarity of the body into consideration. In a way, it’s the ultimate form of demonstrating self-expression, through the use of the naked anatomy, to state an important idea or philosophy. Contemporary artist Matty Mo is fully aware of this and has dabbled in such risqué practices in the past.
Known as “The Most Famous Artist,” Mo has worked with various other artists and has hosted some enticing art exhibitions. Most notably, one of Mo’s exhibitions involved displaying nude snapchat pictures, which were interestingly turned into art. It was a brilliant move that began as a joke with no basis for success in existence, until Mo’s birthday arrived. He asked his fans and followers to send him nude snaps with written text stating Happy Birthday #TheMostFamousArtist, and in return he promised them the chance to be famous. It didn’t take long for him to receive 500 nude snaps, and from those he strategically chose the top 42 shots to display to the public.
Although his exhibition, which was in the New York TriBeCa area, consisted of a subject that is in some ways taboo, it was the product of a very good economic outcome for him and his creative team. At first, people walked through the exhibition with looks of utter disgust in their faces, but when the story behind the snaps was told, his shots glistened with attention in the building lights. He began selling the pictures whose value was determined by the size of the print. The price for a small size was $200, medium size was $600 and $1000 for a large piece.
Nevertheless, Mo expected something more from the exhibition than simply wide stares and some expected grunts. He wanted to make a statement about society through the nude art pieces. His view on contemporary society and the present generation were reflected through the snaps he received, which proved his point that Snapchat is a technology platform where people share nude content freely and regularly. Snapchat makes a profit from all of the pictures that people are sending and receiving, and his art exhibition was a comment on that as well. Thus, he explained that what he did, put up pictures of exploitative content he received from random people, was no different than what Snapchat does.
With such a bold move, Mo received DMs from the people whose nude snaps were chosen and turned into art pieces where, for the most part, they thanked him for the opportunity to be a part of the creative show. The pictures he chose consisted of men and women and were used solely for the purpose of commentating on how they reflect today’s society. He was relieved that the messages mainly contained positive reactions, an aspect which assured him that he wasn’t alone when it came to making an important statement about Snapchat.
Mo expects that his art works can convey deep and significant messages so that his viewers can get in his mind. The nude snap art exhibition managed to do that in a valiant manner. Aside from making a statement about snapchat, the snaps laid a clear statement about society which insisted that people are willing to exploit themselves if it means they will have the chance to become famous. Recently, Mo has planned a bolder move. He’s been the subject of a controversial topic which involves him amputating his arm and placing it in a formaldehyde tank to sell for 10 million dollars, a reference to Damien Hirst who sold a stuffed shark placed in a fish tank to Charles Saatchi for the same price.