Happy 5th Birthday Instagram!

What did the art world ever do before you came along? Here, four artists reveal who they follow.

rob pruitt

Rob Pruitt, aka @robpruitt5000

To me, an Instagram account usually lacks the grandiosity of a bigger artist project like a novel or a film, but there can still be a strong voice or a point of view that comes through. That’s what I like especially about @lenadunham, who I’ve known forever, and with whom I’ve even worked. She’s just posting casual snaps of her daily life or endorsing friends’ projects, but you always get a real sense of what she cares about. I especially like her weekly posts of dogs that are available for adoption.

I just love @karmakarma9’s eye and aesthetic sensibility. Sometimes I don’t leave my studio and get out into the world to look at things so I depend on someone as active as Brendan Dugan to see what’s going on. It’s just one person’s vantage point, but I trust him.

I’ve known @rrainaterrorr for a while, going back to a couple of years ago when she was totally reluctant to participate in social media. Now, I think her Instagram feed is so completely personal, including diary entries and bucolic photographs that are a real extension of her drawings and paintings. Plus, there’s a performative element that I really love. She’s often at the center of these really short memes, dancing or simply showing off costumes and extravagant makeup that she’s whipped up.

@joanaavillez is a brilliant young illustrator, and so it’s nice to see New York cultural events as they’re happening, but filtered through line drawings rather than photography.

I don’t know @lil_tau_au personally, but I certainly know her and admire her art. What I like about Tauba’s account is that it makes me feel very lazy about my own. She seems very pattern-obsessed and so am I, so I always appreciate her posts on a visual level. It’s one of the only accounts I’ve visited where I’ve gone all the way back to the beginning and read through her feed like a book.

Have you ever looked at @imamysedaris? It’s just so perfectly her. Everything that I’ve ever loved about her comedy for the past 20 years, I love about her Instagram feed. Some of her themes play to a broad base, but she always has the best cat pictures you’ll see anywhere. She also seems to like art, and I’ve discovered a couple of artists that I didn’t know about through her feed.

Jeanette Hayes, aka @jeanettehayes

Me! (Lol)

@jackdonoghueboy is my best friend from childhood who is the frontman of the band Salem. His IG is continuously inspirational, with posts that often seem even spiritual in their beauty. And every now and then, if you look really closely, you can catch a #tempgram.

@aurel_sex aurel is another best friend and a wonderful artist. Her IG follows her bi-coastal adventures, plus you get some glimpses of her work.

@petrafcollins is a friend whom I admire for many reasons, one being her Instagram. She is able to utilize it to broadcast messages and show her photography in a way that is somehow not annoying. (A lot of photographers struggle with this, whether they are aware of it or not.)

@booger_nose is a film maker and artist whose posts are a treat in my timeline. They capture specific and special moments in NYC, and also reference films in a way that any cinephile would appreciate.

@the_cable_guy_’s Instagram makes me lol daily. I don’t even really like funny Instagrams, but when it’s good, it’s good. And his is good.

Alex Prager, aka @alexprager

@balletoperadeparis My latest project La Grande Sortie is a film commissioned by The Paris Opera Ballet. I love to keep up with the new projects the dancers are performing in. It adds romance to my day.

@dswt is an organization that helps Kenya’s wildlife and often times saves them from poaching. The account shows all the cute animals they have rescued, including many baby elephants and giraffes.

@cinefamily is a group of film lovers here in Los Angeles. They put on screenings of interesting and unusual films, and oftentimes have Q&A’s with the filmmakers. The pictures they put up on Instagram are usually still frames or posters pulled from movies they are screening.

@co is a fashion brand based in Los Angeles. I follow them because it’s an easy way for me to see their new designs and inspirations.

@vanessaprager is my sister and an incredible painter. She paints with her emotions. It’s vivid, colorful, and feels alive, almost 3-D. You feel like you could swim around in her pictures.

@foryourart is an account I follow to keep up with interesting art shows around Los Angeles.

Ed Fornieles, aka @eddfornieles

Follow @amaliaulman, where everything is not what it seems, and reality mixes with fiction to create something distinct and sometimes alarming.

@deankissick is my friend and housemate, and an extreme pessimist, who never takes anything at face value. He’s willing to attack enemies, ideas, friends, and loved ones with equal vigor.

@lil_mirrrroring, aka Colin Carruthers, is a kindhearted Canadian comedian-alcoholic doing his best to make it in Hollywood. This generation’s Andy Kaufman. And @cute.jpg is Mai, Colin’s assistant. Mai keeps things together.

@matscarlsson_ooo is a philosopher in Stockholm who uses sci-fi and diagrams to unpack ideas concerned with ideology and identity creation in an easy and entertaining way.