Is this a reflection of “the age of 2020” or the portrait of a narcissistic generation? In Stockholm, the last of the so-called Selfie “museums” provide a colorful setting for Instagram and TikTok followers.
Presented as “an interactive experience for social networks”, the Youseum (a pun on ‘you’ and ‘museum’, in English), on the outskirts of the Swedish capital, is home to no works of art hanging on the white walls. And the price of your ticket (more than 30 dollars) is closer to that of an amusement park than that of a classic museum.
Here, visitors stroll through brightly colored and eccentrically decorated rooms, intended to provide an attractive setting for the photos and videos that visitors post on their social networks.
“Here you can take funny photos and create cool content for your Instagram or Facebook. And if they are on TikTokthey have the perfect place to make the videos for this network”, explains Sofia Makiniemi, one of the managers of the place.
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Behind her is the “emoji room”, filled with blue and yellow balls representing the well-known smiley faces.
In the dozen other themed rooms, one can dive into a pool with foam candy that simulates candy in a French Riviera-inspired space, pose under bright neon lights, or sit on a giant pink swing. .
“There’s lighting, TikTok music, sweets, whatever we like,” said 18-year-old Zeneb Elmani, who is visiting with a group of friends. The student loves that the Youseum has the “2020” vibe.
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“My God, this is so cute! -it says.
Located in a mall, the Youseum “is an interactive museum where you can create the art you want to see,” says Makiniemi.
After the first two spaces launched in the Netherlands by commercial real estate giant Westfield, Sweden is the second country to welcome one.
It opened in mid-March in a giant business center in Solna, on the outskirts of Stockholm. Other projects are announced in Germany or Dubai.
The era of social media and its influencers comes with growing warnings about possible mental health risks for adolescents and young people, especially girls.
“It’s a big part of our society today. So why not try to make it more creative? “, defends Makiniemi.
The young schoolgirls who visit the compound that day show no cause for concern.
“I find this place nice for people who like to take pictures. It’s too cute here, my God, it’s too cute! exclaims Chaymae Ouahchi, 18.
The young woman does not consider herself an influencer and assures us that she is “a very secretive person”.
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Generations past may cringe at hearing a place dedicated to taking selfies with cellphones described as a “museum,” or they may resign themselves, like Bill Burgwinkle, a 70-year-old professor visiting with his niece.
“I think it’s too late to worry. The world is like that now” and this type of enclosure, until unlikely, “seems to fulfill its function”, he assures.
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