Rosalind Solomon Inside Out
March 1 – April 5, 2008
Opening: March 1st, 6 - 8pm
Silverstein Photography is pleased to announce Inside Out, a multimedia exhibition featuring the works of artist Rosalind Solomon. Solomon’s work is non-linear, flowing back and forth between the personal and the universal, addressing struggle and survival, ritual and reality, surface and substance. Although Solomon’s photographs have been widely exhibited around the world, including her noteworthy 1986 exhibition Ritual at the Museum of Modern Art New York, Inside Out offers the viewer an intimate glimpse of the artist through pivotal multimedia works and photographs seen here for the first time.
Rosalind Fox was born in 1930 in Highland Park, Illinois. After graduating from Goucher College in Baltimore in 1951 with a degree in political science, she married Jay Solomon, a successful entrepreneur, and moved to Chattanooga where she raised her two children. From 1977 to 1979, Solomon lived in Washington, D.C. while her husband was a member of President Jimmy Carter’s Administration. Though she was an active participant in the D.C. political social circle, the lifestyle never suited Solomon, and she felt increasingly alienated.
Finding a new voice, Solomon began talking to herself through the camera while traveling in Japan. In 1972, she began studies with New York Photo League member Lisette Model, her only photography teacher. At First Mondays, a monthly flea market in Scottsboro, Alabama, Solomon discovered mounds of old dolls and began photographing them regularly. Those with perfect faces expressed her feelings about the pretense surrounding her; crazed dolls with missing limbs related to her obsessive concern about family illness. Some of the doll photographs from First Mondays appear in this exhibition, alongside Solomon’s telling self-portraits.
In 1984, Solomon’s conventional marriage and comfortable life ended. She moved to New York City to pursue her passion for art. It was during this transition that the work Catacombs was created, an installation centered on burying symbols of her past life. The piece includes Solomon’s wedding dress, her husband’s business suit, and a hostess gown—all enshrined so she could move toward her new life as an artist. Adjacent to this room is Mute, the first of several videos that Solomon began in Mexico in 2001.
While Solomon’s subject matter is often sourced from deep within her own life, it seeks to connect with the lives of her subjects. The main gallery includes photographs from Solomon’s seminal monographs, Chapalingas (Steidl, 2003) and Polish Shadow (Steidl, 2006), along with unpublished images. Many are unique vintage prints made in the 1970's and early 1980's. In the third gallery, Solomon has created a video installation, Don’t Eat my Flowers!, displayed on three monitors. The artist performs recurrent and reactive parental memories from her own childhood.
Solomon has been the recipient of the John Guggenheim Memorial Fellowship, an American Institute of Indian Studies Fellowship, and a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship. Her work is in the collections of over 50 museums, including Bibliothèque Nationale de France; Center for Creative Photography; Corcoran Gallery of Art; George Eastman House; Metropolitan Museum; Museo de Arte de Lima; Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; Museum of Modern Art; National Gallery of Art; National Gallery of Canada; Photographische Sammlung, Cologne; San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; and the Victoria and Albert Museum. Most recently, Solomon participated in an exhibition at the Aperture Foundation entitled Lisette Model & Her Successors. Solomon works and lives in New York City.