The Century of The Self

Open Exhibition During Frieze London 2018 4-8th October

We are now in the era of The Self.  There is nothing more important than You. Your destiny. Your reality. Your dreams. Your goals and your unique perspective. On every avenue, you are confronted by a plethora of opportunities to choose your identity: straight / bi-sexual / homosexual, liberal / conservative, Neo-Marxist / Constructivist / Colonial apologist, Single / in a Relationship, Male / Female / Other, and it continues almost endlessly in order to create a complete ‘identity’ and Self. 

Living in the post-truth-age come data-privacy-era, We, You, Me, live in a world where we’re connected to more things yet miles apart from each other. Social anxiety, identity politics and the digitalisation of The Self, both unites us and divides us simultaneously.   

Through these manifold variations, formations and creations of The Self, we, you, and I, are faced with a question: who or what is the Real Self? We encounter this question when we meet someone in person or online, in a bar or at a gallery, but also and perhaps more saliently, when we look at ourselves in the mirror. Who is actually looking back at us? 

“There can be more truth in the mask that you adopt, than your real inner-self,” Slavoj Žižek.  

Following on from Adam Curtis’s acclaimed documentary, The Century of The Self, this exhibition seeks to explore the three phases of the Self: birth, life and death. 

Birth, can be interpreted in many ways. From the immergence and awareness of one’s own consciousness, the beginning of self-identification or the birth of oneself as a consumer.  

Life, can be explored through multiple strata of thinking. From the commodification of the self and the human experience, the varying stages of life that we transition through (youth, middle age, old age) and the subsequent experiences, or the impact of the digitalisation of life. 

Death, can be deciphered in manifold avenues. Philosophically, via the death of God; spiritually, through the death and rebirth of the self; or globally, through the possibility of human extinction.  

Artists’ interpretations are welcomed and encouraged. There will be one exhibition combining the three stages of the self. It will be held at the start of Frieze week 4th October in a special Central London location.  


Dr Faisal Abdu’Allah, Artist and Associate Professor of Art, University of Wisconsin-Madison 
Doug Fishbone, Artist and frequent lecturer at University of Arts London, University of Westminster and Middlesex University 
Rebecca Fairman, Director and Curator, ArtHouse1 Gallery
Jennifer Thatcher, Writer (Art Monthly), Lecturer (Sotheby’s Institute of Art) and Public Programmes Curator (Folkestone Triennial)


  • In order to submit your work you will need to pay the Entry Fee £15 
  • Then copy the transaction ID into the Subject title of your email to:  
  • Maximum image size 3MB 


  • You may enter up to two works per entry fee 
  • If you are submitting a series, this is considered one work. You can attach images of more than one work within the series 
  • You may enter as many times as you wish by purchasing additional Entry Fees 
  • Works previously exhibited and published elsewhere are accepted 
  • Collaborative works are accepted 
  • Works produced within the last three years are preferred, although works made at any time before submission can be entered 
  • You may include a short personal statement (150 words max)  
  • Please include a brief description as to how your work links to the subject (200 words max) 
  • There is no size limit, although the size of the work in relation to the exhibition space will be a consideration in the shortlisting process 
  • Deadline for submission: 12 pm GMT 26th September 2018 
  • Shortlisted artists will be contacted by 9 pm GMT 27th September 2018 
  • If you are shortlisted you will be asked to supply your artwork for the exhibition in London, UK, no later than the 2nd of October. Artists selected for the exhibition will be responsible for all transportation (delivery and collection) and insurance costs of artworks.