Self-Destructed Self-Portrait Series

Doron Beuns

A collection of work from Doron’s self-destructed self-portrait series. Doron was also one of our shortlisted artists for our eye opener exhibition. If you would like to see more of Doron’s work, his exhibition ‘Self-destructed self-portrait’ opens on the 26th of April at 5:30 in St Georges SG60.

Self-destructed self-portrait series by Doron Beuns

‘When choosing or creating images of self-representation we often wish to project a stable, symmetrical and virtuous self. With our intensive use of social media, we also repetitively replace our profile picture. Replacing one’s profile picture implicates abolishing the old self-image in favour of a new one. This is precisely what is at stake in my self-destructed my self-portraits; The discrepancy between the dynamic present experience of the self and the static representation of the self. Self-destruction could furthermore be highly pleasurable; for example in heavy workout or a wild night out. The physical suffering in those activities is experienced as a pleasure. Something I also experienced when doing my photographs and video performances.’

Self-screwing self-portrait (self-portrait print on metal sheet) 2017

This work is at the root of the self-destructed self-portrait series. It is a printed steel sheet screwed to the wall. The face is flattened, cropped and fixated. The position of the eyes seem to contemplate the violence that had just perpetuated. This work has later on reinterpreted into a key ring in collaboration with fashion designer Elisabeth Quax. They are currently being sold as merchandise to finance more self-destructed self-portraits.

Self-kicking self-portrait (video performance) 2017

The realself kicks its representation in the face. From this work onwards I became interested in the interaction between different forms of the self. As the self-portrait was printed on glass, the work became a personal breakthrough.

Self-polishing self-portrait 2017 (two-channel video performance)

In this video performance I am cleaning a glass sheet that was screen printed on one side. The similar acts of cleaning create two contradictory results; One side is polished while the self-portrait on the other side has perished.

Self-standing self-portrait 2018 (video performance)

In this video performance two separated halves of the self-portrait that are being pushed into a sandpapering machine by the real self. The self-portrait slowly disappears while being surveilled by the camera.

Self-hanging self-portrait (as pinata) 2018 (three-channel video performance)

In this video performance I asked Malachi (the son of a fellow artist and friend Lynnette Dipple-Bets) crack open a piñata in the form of my face. This piñata was filled with all sorts of red candy to blur the line between innocence and gore. Malachi however seemed very pleased with all the candy he was gifted.

Self-wrestling portrait (2018)

In this video I am wrestling my fellow artist and friend Tom Hill, who is disguised as my self-portrait by wearing a printed blindfold. This work is as much about internal conflict and the inclination to take it out on your external environment.

Self-stretching self-portrait (after Bruce Nauman) 2018 (video performance)

In this video I am positioning deforming a piece of stretch jersey in front of my real face. It felt like a way to express externalise the internal dynamic of frustration. The title is inspired by incomprehensible text messages that my friends send me when they are frustrated.

Words: Doron Beuns, Fine Art, @doronbeuns

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