Snapchat and renowned artist Jeff Koons recently collaborated to showcase his iconic sculptures across the world utilizing the platform’s new augmented reality feature.
While it’s appealing, not all artists approved of the idea, as on Wednesday, New York-based artist Sebastian Errazuriz and his studio Cross Lab protested the collaborative project by vandalizing Koons’ “Balloon Dog” installation that appears on the app in Central Park.
Errazuriz shared his reason via Instagram, saying “It is vital to start questioning how much of our virtual public space we are willing to give to companies. Right now such sculptures exist in a realm dominated by social media corporations, offering us ‘free’ services that we voluntarily join. Nevertheless, with time, the boundaries between reality and virtual reality fade.”
He continues, “The virtual world, where the majority of our social interactions take place, becomes our reality. Once we begin experiencing the world predominantly through AR, our public space will be dominated by corporate content designed to subconsciously manipulate and control us. If Snapchat X Jeff Koons are the first to create a geo-tagged augmented reality corporate artwork, we will be the first to vandalize it as a way to question its legitimacy.”
With the graffiti-detailed version of the AR sculpture geo-tagged on the exact same GPS coordinates as Snapchat’s version, the protest art isn’t visible using Snapchat, but Errazuriz created an independent app called ARNYC.NYC that is free to download by anyone seeking an alternative to view the artwork.
Snapchat has yet to respond.
In other art news, Marina Abramović wants you to eat macarons that taste like her life.