“When you publish content or information using the public setting, it means you are allowing everyone, including people off of Facebook, to access and use that information, and to associate it with you (i.e., your name and profile picture).” Those words, taken from Facebook’s Statement of Rights, serve as inspiration behind the photographer Jenna Garrett’s ongoing series The Public Profile of an American Girl. As part of a larger body of work titled The Public Profile Project, Garrett expertly curates the images young women post to Facebook publicly, offering uncomfortably voyeuristic grids composed of different women and girls executing recognizable poses like duck face or gang-related hand symbols. 


Licking My Friend, 48 Images


Speaking to issues of feminism and privacy, Garrett explores the idea that women of younger generations “appear to expose themselves at any cost.” The women, shown mimicking certain behaviors time and again, eerily appear as they might on a surveillance screen or police investigation board, each frame seeming to reveal personal lives and relationships with or without its subject’s permission. With the troubling presence of “revenge porn” and projects like “Grabbing 100 Boobs At Burning Man,” Garrett’s images courageously and subtly confront the ways in which images of women’s bodies are shared and exploited. 


Gang Sign, 48 Images


The grid-like arrangement of the images also inspires concern over the limited ways in which women are expected to express themselves on social media. The works begs the question, “are these selfies insightful self-portraits or merely performative rituals?” In an internet culture where womenkind’s right to privacy and self-expression are simultaneously undermined, Garett’s work sits us face-to-face with our internet alter-egos and places us within a social and artistic dialogue unlike any other. What do YOU think of the work? Sound off in the comments!


The Face, 48 Images

Car Self Portrait, 48 Images

Thanks to Feature Shoot

Images via Feature Shoot

Tagged in: women's rights, the public profile project, the public profile of an american girl, social media, selfies, self portraiture, revenge porn, privacy, Photography, jenna garrett, grabbing 100 boobs at burning man, gang signs, feminism, facebook, exploitation of women, duck face   

The opinions expressed on the BUST blog are those of the authors themselves and do not necessarily reflect the position of BUST Magazine or its staff.

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