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What happens when you text an emoji to SFMOMA

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A screenshot example of a text sent through Send Me SFMOMA project, launched in June by San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. (Jessica Christian/S.F. Examiner)
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In an age where technology rules, one San Francisco museum is doing its part to playfully infiltrate smartphones and bring people back to good old fashioned art appreciation with a twist.

“Send Me SFMOMA” is the latest project venture by the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. Launched in June, the free service invites digital users to engage with art in a more personal way.

The project allows its users to curate their own experience, offering up pieces of art related to something as trivial as the donut emoji to more meaningful words such as “family” and “love,” or even a specific color.

To participate, users text the words “send me” to 572-51 followed by the key words of their choosing. Not all emojis come back with a result (we attempted to send the taco emoji, to no avail), but in the case of a missing emoji, the museum will offer up other options for you to explore.

According to SFMOMA’s creative technologist Jay Mollica, the museum’s collection is so large that it can only physically show about 5 percent of it in their galleries. Within four days of their beta test, the museum received more than 12,000 text messages generating over 3,000 different artworks sent to users.

So, next time you get the urge to mindlessly scroll through your ex’s Instagram, consider shooting off a short text message to SFMOMA and seeing what you get in return. We promise they’ll text you back.

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