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The Five Most Instagrammable Photo Ops at Color Factory, a New Candy-Hued Pop-Up Art Show

Here’s your social media shot list. You’re welcome.


The Ribbon Boomerang Wander through 10,000 suspended ribbons. Prime Boomerang material.

(1 of 5)

The Mini Artist Pick up a six-foot magic marker and doodle on the walls.

(2 of 5)

The Baller This massive ball pit is like Chuck E. Cheese on steroids. Sink into the three-and-a-half-foot deep pit and get a snap of your mug in a sea of yellow.

(3 of 5)

The Confetti Snow Angel Lie back and leave your mark in this room that snows colorful confetti.

(4 of 5)

The Ultimate Meta-Selfie Your own face among the thousands of discarded selfies that artist Tom Stayte's machine automatically prints and spits onto the floor every 12 seconds.

(5 of 5)

Is it art if it has not been Instagrammed? That is the philosophical question of the day, as museums, both blue-chip and otherwise, are designing exhibitions with exhibitionists in mind. From Random International’s Rain Room at MoMA (which some call “arguably the artwork that started it all”) to the recent pop-up social media sensation the Museum of Ice Cream in L.A., people are scooping up the hottest tickets and coming out with a coveted selfie. 

The latest iteration is Color Factory, a 12,000-sqaure-foot Willy Wonka–inspired feast for the senses that has taken over a vacant commercial building on Sutter Street for the month of August. Fifteen artists, among them Swedish sculptor Jacob Dahlgren and the Oakland multidisciplinary artist Tosha Stimage, created each of the color-themed rooms. These include everything from scratch-and-sniff walls and a room that rains confetti to a cookie carousel with treats from Chantal Guillon and an all-yellow gift shop serving sunshine-hued soft-serve on tap. All this is the brainchild of event producer Jordan Ferney, whose blog Oh Happy Day was basically Pinterest before there was Pinterest. Refreshingly, Ferney is not pretending that the snap-and-share phenomenon is an accidental part Color Factory’s conception. Upon entering, you receive a card to register with your email. Scan it at the photo stations set up around the building and your picture will be taken and immediately emailed to you. Total instant gratification, no selfie stick necessary.

But Color Factory is no mere calorie-dense social media confection. The color-themed rooms tackle subjects ranging from the African-American experience (Stimage’s orange room) to, appropriately, the meaning behind and meaninglessness of the #selfie (Tom Stayte's lavender room, where a printer spits out thousands of selfies sourced from the internet every 12 seconds). 

Sure, you could always wing it, but why walk into the perfect ’gramming op without a game plan? Here are five photos you’ll be highly tempted to snap on a jaunt through the show. (See slideshow above.)

Color Factory
, August 1–31, 575 Sutter St. Tickets: $32 (online only, not available at the door).


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