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Cindy Sherman

Cindy Sherman

*  1954 Glenridge/New Jersey

The important feminist photographer and media artist Cindy Sherman was born in Glen Ridge in New Jersey in 1954. She decided to become an artist at an early point, when she was 18 she began to study painting and photography in Buffalo and New York City. In the late 1970s Cindy Sherman made her first comprehensive photographic body of works. In the black and white series "Untitled Film Stills" (1977-1980) the artist shows herself in scenes that look like stills from TV series, Hollywood productions or B movies. In a subtle manner and with a critical eye, she uncovers stereotypes and clichés that women are subject to in the medium film. The role of women in society remains the leitmotif in Cindy Sherman's oeuvre. As of the 1980s she increasingly worked with color photographs. She soon gained an international reputation; in 1982 Sherman showed works at the Kassel Documenta and the Venice Biennale. In the mid 1980s Cindy Sherman's art became occupied with themes of disgust and ugliness and she began to show violent crimes or decaying dead bodies. Her "Disgust Pictures" are especially terrifying, they show dead bodies, rats, mold and all sorts of body juices that cause disgust with the observer. A bit more softer are her postmodern "History Portraits" from the late 1980s: In this series Cindy Sherman subtly references world-famous portraits by old masters. The following series "Sex Pictures", however, again used shock values. For this body of works Cindy Sherman employed crash-test-dummies, artificial limbs and sex toys to create confusing scenes with the intention to unmask voyeurism. Cindy Sherman's photographs have long become acclaimed, in 2001 she was honored the renowned "International Award in Photography" from the Hasselblad Foundation. The artist, whose works are in possession of distinguished houses such as the Museum of Modern Art, lives and works in New York.