Cindy Sherman & Photography

At this current point in time I same doing a photography studio at Massey University. So I am really interesting in the techniques and visual elements Cindy Sherman has used to create her works. Here are some of my favorite images from there City Gallery Field trip.

clown

Cindy Sherman | Untitled #414 2003 | Image courtesy: The artist and Metro Pictures, New York | © The artist

This here is picture of a depicted clown in the Clowns series of Sherman’s works. This picture stood out to be with the use of vibrant colour. We see here a more feminine looking clown that is draped in what looks to be a silk embodied coat, she stands out in the center aliened frame with a bright ombre orange backdrop. The camera is positioned on a slight upward angle, as if the clown is looking down at the viewer.Sherman has uses the subject matter of clowns to reference gender. Clowns are one of the few characters that are gender less/ non binary identity. Making the perfect subject matter to highlight the gender expectations on people today. Clowns are allowed  freedom in expression without judgement. I believe this comes from the history of clowns. Clowns are derived from court jesters, they are social outsiders and the only ones who are allowed to poke fun at the king, during that time. Looking at these images made me realise what if we treated everyone with the amount of gender freedom we give clowns. A world without judgement and just pure freedom. To allow people to do what they wish with there lives. I believe its really important to question our world around us, to be able to improve. Using mediums like art, literature and design are useful tools for making messages like Sherman does in her photographs. Continuously question gender roles and identity and personal freedom. Her works make us question and spark curiosity. These are some of the questions I think about. If our word was gender less, or had freedoms like clowns have. What would our world look like? Could we ever become a society the values life and choices on how you want to live it? Could I make change?  Like the famous quote that Emma Watson from her ” He or She speech to the UN. “If not me, who? if not now, when”?

 

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