Printed in 1997.
Less the meek and mild virgin of Hollywood biblical epics, Cindy Sherman transforms herself into a louche Madonna, dazed and disoriented by her status as vessel for the immaculate conception and mother of god. Sherman’s spit-curled conception is rather more Ciccone than Ave Maria.
Cindy Sherman (American, b.1954) is a photographer who incorporates aspects of feminism, performance art, cultural criticism, and body and identity politics into her provocative work. Sherman abandoned painting for photography while attending the State University of New York at Buffalo, and in 1976 moved to New York to pursue a career as a photographer.
She gained broad critical acclaim for her famous early series Untitled Film Stills, taking photographs of herself dressed as invented personages embodying female clichés, such as ‘the bored housewife’, ‘the sexy librarian’, and ‘the ambitious career girl’. Sherman continued to use her own disguised body as subject in several other series, including her History Portraits, in which she inserted herself into Old Master paintings to reexamine the role of the female within them. She mainly photographed herself in disguises, departing in darker series on perverted fairy tales, war, and sex, examining issues of anxiety, disgust, the lurid, and the grotesque in her works. She is the recipient of the MacArthur Award and Hasselblad Award for Photography, among other honors. Sherman, who lives and works in New York, has more recently returned to using her own body in her work as the subject of simplified portraits of female types.
Printed in 1997.