'Digital Mirrors' - Special Feature

In this special feature we are thrilled to present Arch Enemy Arts in Philadelphia, currently having a group show called ‘Digital Mirrors’, featuring 17 artists tackling 17 of the modern ways we share our emotions – and of course this is all about emoji!


The introduction to the show reads:


‘The concept for this show focuses on emoji, not so much as just the symbols themselves, but more the evolving role of the symbols in modern language and as a increasingly universal method to communicate human emotions.


You don’t have to look very hard to find a myriad of think pieces all over the internet asking if emoji is on its way to becoming the first truly global language. Not necessarily agreeing or disagreeing with this idea we thought it might be interesting to have some of our artists incorporate this new way of visually communicating human emotions on an effective but often superficial or ordinary level, with their own work and the way that good art communicates feelings and the human condition universally, albeit in what has historically been a much deeper, richer and more culturally impactful way.’


We love emoji art 

And this is emoji fine art at its best! We would have loved to see the show in real life, but we are no way near Philadelphia (US) right now. If you are, then hurry over there as the show closes on Sunday. But otherwise you can admire the  works right here or head over to Arch Enemy Arts (website) where it can also be found beyond the show dates. There you can also acquire the pieces. We personally bought the piece by Alex Garant, which is simply brilliant:


Alex Garant "Forbidden Fruit" (2015) oil on canvas

Alex Garant
"Forbidden Fruit" (2015)
oil on canvas


A distorted modern day version of the ‘Immaculate Hart of Mary’ meets emoji in a mix of references and hints, layer upon layer of concepts and juxtaposing expressions of emotion. Is it s little blasphemous or not? Guess that again depends on ones interpretation - which is why it’s so fun and intelligent at the same time.


Artists' emoji of choice

The piece by Alex Garant of course features the :aubergine: emoji (which seem to have certain different meanings, depending on usage). And the concept for the show was to challenge each artist to chose one emoji to focus on and then build a piece around the symbol / intended vibe (try to guess which?! Find the answer at the end of this post). With many pieces the symbol is incorporated directly, and in a few cases the artist chose to take the intended emotion and simply render that in their own style. We love the result of this challenge!

Peca "We Are The Love" (2015) acrylic on canvas


"We Are The Love" (2015)
acrylic on canvas



Aof Smith
"Would You Like A Smile For Dessert" (2015)
oil on canvas
"Night Consort" (2015)
toothpicked acrylic on canvas 
Hanna Jaeun
"Playing Hearts" (2015)
acrylic on wood panel
Wendy Ortiz
"Till There's Nothing Left" (2015)
acrylic, oil and colored pencil on wood
Dilka Bear
"Death is Not The End" (2015)
oil on canvas panel
Naoto Hattori
"Descent to Earth" (2015)
acrylic on board
Dessie Jackson
"Maybe" (2015)
graphite, charcoal & colored pencil
Rachael Bridge
"Cyber Love" (2015)
oil on board
Matt Ritchie
"Ambulance Chasers" (2015)
wood, acrylic, paint
Joe Hengst
"How I Think You Think I Feel" (2015)
acrylic on wood
Marjolien Caljouw
"Mizaru, Mikazaru, Mazaru" (2015)
acrylics on arches hotpress watercolor paper
Richard Lindström
"#Wow #Yeah #Nice" (2015)
acrylic on canvas
Emily May Rose
"Crying Cat Emoji" (2015)
mixed media on wood panel

Jason Snyder

"Weltschmerz Emoji" (2015)
oil on wood


emoji.academy special features

At emoji.academy we are dedicated to bring you news, fun and facts about emoji. Every week we bring a special feature starring certain emoji, cool innovators, artist and frontrunners of the emoji universe. So whether you are a professor in emoji or just a happy enthusiast you should consider following our blog, Instagram and Facebook. Thanks!



key to artists' choice of emoji

digital mirrors emoji key

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