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         CINDY  SHERMAN     
         born 1954

cindy sherman


In the late 1970s, Cindy Sherman introduced herself to the art world through a series of critically acclaimed black-and-white photographs called Untitled Film Stills. Serving as her own model, Sherman uses wigs, makeup, costumes, lighting, and photographic effects to transform each would-be self–portrait into a startling character study. The references to film and television are apparent, but the ambiguous images are isolated from any narrative. These frozen moments contradict the familiar and jar the viewer into reevaluating how popular culture trains us to respond to images of the female body. This photograph from her follow–up series incorporates garish colors and prosthetic body parts to create a view into the female psyche. What lies beneath the surface is both horrific and grotesque. Sherman's unique ability to create striking, thought–provoking images while combining what ARTnews calls "camp and dead–earnestness" continues to assure her widespread popularity and critical success.

Untitled (#146)
C-print, 1985
Published March 1986
Linda and Harry Macklowe: courtesy the artist and Metro Pictures

(Printable page)

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