Exploring the images artists have created to represent themselves.

In the age of the selfie, Facebook and Instagram, people – including artists – are arguably more preoccupied with how they present themselves to the world than ever before. Ai Weiwei is a case in point, using his own forms of online self-surveillance to comment on the Chinese authority’s relentless monitoring of his day-to-day life, and beginning an internet craze for his ‘leg-gun’ pose a few years ago.

Spanning six centuries, this exhibition investigates the range of ways artists have chosen to represent the self. It includes Ai’s online profiles, as well as works by Tracey Emin and Marina Abramovic and more conventional painted self-representations by Max Beckmann, Gustave Coubet, Ludwig Kirchner, Henri Matisse and Rembrandt.

Scottish National Portrait Gallery

1 Queen Street, Edinburgh, Midlothian, EH2 1JD

0131 624 6200


Opening times

Daily, 10am – 5pm. (6pm during August). Open from noon on 1 Jan. Closed 25 – 26 Dec.

Free to all

50% off exhibitions with National Art Pass

Haven't got your pass yet? Learn more

Exhibitions and events at Scottish National Portrait Gallery

Exhibitions nearby

Back to top