January 9th 2012

Cindy Sherman: an artist to know

If you’re not familiar with artist Cindy Sherman, it’s time you learn. As one of the most recognized, important, and influential artists in contemporary art, she has brown a new level of eloquence and exploration to the artworld in her amazing work.

Working as her own model for more than thirty  years, Sherman has captured herself in a range of guises and personas, using various media, inspirations, themes, and attraction.

Lucky for us, she’ll be featured at the Museum of Modern Art starting in February.

Cindy Sherman (American, b. 1954) is one of the most photographers of the late twentieth century. Although she is largely her own model, these photographs of hers are not self-portraits.  Although, the majority of her photographs are pictures of her, however, these photographs are most definitely not self-portraits.

Instead, Sherman is bringing commentary to the viewer, through the role of the artist, the role of the photographer, the role of the woman, and the role of art.

Sherman has said that, “”It wasn’t until college that I had any concept of what was going on in the art world. My idea of being an artist as a kid was a courtroom artist or one of those boardwalk artists who do caricatures. My parents had a book of, like, the one hundred one beautiful paintings, which included Dali and Picasso among the most recent artists.” These, I can only assume, inspired her greatly.

Her works of art are carefully constructed. Sherman aims to communicate tot he viewer that these are not her; instead, they are portraits of actual people. Not herself. She takes the time to depersonalize them, making them no one and everyone.

In a new exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art, Sherman is showcased in over 180 photographs. This exhibition is a retrospective survey that traces her career from the mid 1970s to the present. The photographs are filled with groundbreaking and popular works and series, including her famous black-and-white pictures that feature the artist in stereotypical female roles inspired by 1950s and 1960s Hollywood (“Untitled Film Stills”, 1977 to 1980). Other inclusions are her poses as aristocrats, clergymen, and milkmaids in the manner of old master paintings (1989 to 1990), and her her society portraits  that represent the aging in the context of contemporary obsessions with youth and status (2008). Her most recent works, from 2010, include her photographic murals.In addition to the exhibition, Sherman has selected films from MoMA’s collection to be screened in MoMA’s theaters during the run the exhibition.

Cindy Sherman

February 26–June 11, 2012

Sixth floor, Museum of Modern Art

Organized by: Eva Respini, Associate Curator, with Lucy Gallun, Curatorial Assistant, Department of Photography.

Post a Comment

Andrew's Biography

Email this Author with comments or questions.

Andrew loves art and design, and pursues his studies in his final year at the Ontario College of Art and Design. He loves seeking out new artists and giving them their dues, and in his spare time, focuses on his own abstract sculpture.