Ever since Instagram became everybodys essential social media platform, our ways of seeing and writing about Berlin have changed from photo stories on the blog to live captures in our Instafeeds. A picture is a picture: it doesn’t need a headline or any context, and on Instagram, it’s instant (duh). Not only does this particular format create reliable resonance, but the exposure through the quick likes and comments can catapult a user from a nobody to a celebrity. Especially if they have a solid selfie game, unlike my pitiful self.
But not only selfies garner attention. Having the ability to show a new way of visuality across cityscapes and public architecture has become another category of hot Instagram fame. It seems as if Berliners specifically have found a very special way of picturing the city. If I had to define this style, it would be: sleek, with strong colors and straight lines, with an eye for details and unusual angles.
You could say that some artists have found a great and immediate way – albeit not necessarily lucrative – to display their works online. But lately, I’ve come to the conclusion that – at least in regards to Berlin and our most vivid and famous Instagrammers – it’s more apt to say that only through Instagram, their photography becomes art.
The Berlin Start-Up PostCollective is tapping into that feeling, and are offering Instagrammers the opportunity to step out of virtuality with their works. Some of the most popular Instagrammers are on there with their best prints. Fans and followers are able to order prints, including frames, to decorate their spaces with.
Some of the public places pictured become abstracted and unrecognizable in those pictures – some of my favorites, by the way.
While calling photography, and especially camera phone and virtual photography, works of art is understandably arguable, it does seem as if Instagram has cultivated a very specific artistic eye for architecture. If the medium didn’t already contextualize the creation of these pictures – they’re live, they’re limited to the filters and tools provided by the app, and because there’s an abundance of city photography, those who want to be recognized and outstanding using the platform, have to actually find an aesthetic that is different. I do believe that a new aesthetic was achieved, and although I’m sure it’s not limited to Berlin street still lives (nor Berlin or architecture in particular), it’s really impressive how my eye has been schooled to recognize certain spots of the city because I saw them – in that angle – on Instagram.
You can buy all of the pictures posted in this article on PostCollective.