I HIGHLY RECOMMEND you go see… Lorna Simspon on view now thru May 6, 2007 at The Whitney Museum of American Art.
Here’s a description of the exhibit from the Whitney website:
“One of the leading artists of her generation, Lorna Simpson is well known for her photographic and film works, which often examine racial and gender identity. In works such as Call Waiting (1997), she depicts people of color engaging in intimate yet incomplete conversations that elude easy interpretation but seem to plumb the mysteries of identity and desire. Organized by the American Federation of Arts, this comprehensive first mid-career survey will feature her image and text works, serigraphs on felt, film installations, and a selection of recent work.”
Mr. Man and I bused it crosstown to the Upper East Side in the overcast haze of the Sunday and made it to the Whitney to see this (IMHO) insightful and brilliant retropsective.
I remember the first time I’d heard about Lorna. I was in a student/teacher conference with my SLC college photography professor Joel Sternfeld (a well-know fine art photographer himself) and had expressed to him that despite the visionaries we had studied about in class, I wanted to view the work of Black photographers – he immediately suggested I look up Lorna Simpson. Thank you Joel!
Ever since then I have searched for and devoured anything with Lorna’s work that I can get my hands on.
Lorna is truly a master at juxtaposing the visual image with (narrative) text. Her images are visually clean/uncluttered but filled with metaphor and powerful commentary on the historical and contemporary role of the Black female in American (USA) society.
For those of you not familiar with Lorna’s work or the subject matter of racial and gender identity, I suggest you take advantage of the FREE group tour. The guide is eloquent and breaks down many of Lorna’s pieces into a consumable context for fine art newbies.