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Cindy Sherman vs Old Masters

21st century

Cindy Sherman vs Old Masters

Time for a little quiz for all those who consider themselves the experts in Old Masters! We will show you photographs made by Cindy Sherman, a contemporary American photographer, which reference famous portraits from art history.

Ready?

Untitled #224, 1990


cindy sherman old masters

Cindy Sherman’s photographs focus on inventing personas or tableaus that examine the construction of identity, the nature of representation (especially female!), and the artifice of photography.

Untitled #216, 1989


cindy sherman old masters
Sherman always prepares her images from scratch as she assumes the multiple roles of photographer, model, makeup artist, hairdresser, and stylist.

Untitled #205, 1989

cindy sherman old masters


Sherman works in series, with each being self-contained and internally coherent, but all of them are at the same time connected by recurring themes such as the grotesque, the mythical, or gender and class identity.

Untitled #228, 1990

 cindy sherman old masters


Her “History Portrait” or “Old Masters” series of thirty-five photographs blends Post-Modern consciousness with timeless masterpieces (or tropes that they represent) of European masters. She created the series during the years 1989 and 1990 while she was living in Rome, but as she recalled: When I was doing those history pictures I was living in Rome but never went to the churches and museums there. I worked out of books, with reproductions. Is this why they all bear a disquieting quality? For their open artificiality and unsettling use of props?

Answers:

Caravaggio, Bacchino Malato, 1593, Galleria Borghese cindy sherman old masters

Caravaggio, Bacchino Malato, 1593, Galleria Borghese

Virgin and Child Surrounded by Angels, right wing of the diptych, Royal Museum of Fine Arts, Antwerp cindy sherman old masters

Virgin and Child Surrounded by Angels, right wing of the diptych, Royal Museum of Fine Arts, Antwerp

Rafael Santi, La Fornarina, Galleria Nazionale d'Arte Antica, 1518–1520 cindy sherman old masters

Rafael Santi, La Fornarina, Galleria Nazionale d’Arte Antica, 1518–1520

Botticelli, Judith Leaving the Tent of Holofernes, 1495-1500, Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam cindy sherman old masters

Botticelli, Judith Leaving the Tent of Holofernes, 1495-1500, Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam

Find out more about Cindy Sherman Old Masters:

     

 


Magda, art historian and Italianist, she writes about art because she cannot make it herself. She loves committed and political artists like Ai Weiwei or the Futurists; like Joseph Beuys she believes that art can change us and we can change the world.

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