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PORTRAIT OF AN IMAGE: A PORTFOLIO BY RONI HORN

THE UNDERLYING INDETERMINACY OF THE PHYSICAL WORLD, AND PERHAPS ALL THE more so our experience of it, reserves a rebuke for any kind of graphic fixity. It is a rebuke that Roni Horn has embraced, interrogated, and accommodated in an especially diverse body of work. Nowhere, though, does the figure of mutability appear quite so enigmatic as in her photo-based portrait series. That the effects derive from an element in some sense external to the multiple takes should come as no surprise; Horn’s sets, series, and multiwork installations invariably involve a repercussive relay of allusions and inflections. But You Are the Weather, 1994–95, Clowd and Cloun (Blue) and Clowd and Cloun (Gray) (both 2001), and Doubt by Water, 2003–2004, demonstrated that atmospheric or geographic conditions, in the trace of an exposure or a proximate representation, could infiltrate and perturb the human facies,

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