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Nan Goldin
Matthew Marks Gallery, West Hollywood, California
Recommendation by Jody Zellen

Nan Goldin, ''Chimera,'' 2013, chromogenic print, 27 3/8 x 40''.


Continuing through June 22, 2013


Nan Goldin was authorized to wander through the Louvre after hours to shoot photographs of the art there. A selection of those photographs is juxtaposed with about 400 of her own images to create "Scopophilia," meaning "love of looking." This project is both a 25-minute slide installation and a series of paired photographs. It is clear she is in awe of both the paintings she chooses to reproduce and the living subjects in her own work. 


While the formal comparisons at times are obvious, the project offers an interesting perspective on art, looking and their relation to female sexuality and one's comfort with one's own body. For example, in "Odalisque" Goldin presents a grid of 16 images from her archives that reflect the pose in Ingres' "La Grand Odalisque" (1814), which serves as the anchor. Subsequent arrangements are formally composed so that like images are seen in relation to each other. This body of work strives to go beyond these formal comparisons, however. This is also a meditation on the animate vs. inanimate, living flesh vs. its reproduction. Goldin ultimately concerns herself with the subject of pleasure and pain. She uses the images she gathered as an entry into a fresh reading of her own history.


Published courtesy of ArtSceneCal ©2013

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