The workshop was introduced with a brief history of the mirror: From the myth of Narcissus, to sophisticated luxury items and tools of technology in the Renaissance era. Around 1420, the architect Brunelleschi understood how to make use of mirrors to create a realistic illusion of a three-dimensional space on a two-dimensional surface. Brunelleschi’s linear perspective had the most profound effect on the history of Western art. Thanks to his invention, artists started to use mirrors for sketches of portraits and complex landscapes. In the present day, mirrors are no longer luxury items — they are everywhere.

In 2010, Apple released the iPhone 4, the first smartphone to feature a frontal camera. This device gave birth to the selfie, a new genre of digital self-portrait made to be shared on social media. To me, this was a revolution akin to Brunelleschi’s invention.

In the last decade, smartphones have radically changed the way we perceive reality and express our identity. The iPhone introduced the smartest mirror on the planet, and the rest is history...


Gerrrit RIetveld Academie

Graphic Department

Amsterdam, 2020