Petra Cortright

Lonely Girl

Organized by Asher Penn
Al Baio, Petra Cortright, Greem Jellyfish, Maggie Lee, Bunny Rogers, Analisa Teachworth, Amalia Ulman

Martos Gallery is pleased to present Lonely Girl, a group show consisting of 7 female artists, all under the age the age of 30: Al Baio, Petra Cortright, Maggie Lee, Greem Jellyfish, Bunny Rogers, Analisa Teachworth and Amalia Ulman.

The show’s title is derived from Lonelygirl15, a popular teenage girl’s YouTube video diary from 2006 that gained mass media attention when it was revealed to be a serialized miniseries. Lonelygirl15’s transgressive use of the conventions of YouTube shifted the social networking platform into a medium of fiction and fantasy.

Lonely Girl will present a group of female artists who continuously use multiple online platforms (Twitter, Tumblr, Facebook, Instagram and personal sites) as medium to simultaneously showcase themselves and their creative output.

The artists in this show represent an unprecedented moment in cultural history—where the artist themselves can be equally or sometimes more visible than their artworks themselves. Self-portraiture (aka “the selfie”) is so much a part of both their artworks as well as the documentation of their lives, that it is often difficult to distinguish which one is which.

The regular dispatches of these artists cultivate a rich context in which to view their creative output. As an artist like Richard Prince created a framework to view his work through a tapestry of artist books, fiction, essays and interviews, these artists’ daily output is received as part of a larger narrative—almost like a television show.

The social networking sites on which these girls operate afford them a deep control of their self-representation. While in the past artists have relied on magazines or galleries for visibility in the public sphere, these artists create and manage visibility on their own terms. The artists in Lonely Girl utilize the roving eyeballs of the Internet to solicit an audience, projecting images of their own gaze into the camera’s lens.

As the daily activities of these artists are consumed by sometimes thousands of online followers, their work and ideas often reaches far beyond the parameters of the art world, vying instead towards a value system based off of meritocracy and personal connection. All the artists in this show have built their audiences independently from the support or endorsement of any institution.