Los Angeles

Los Angeles

“ENCORE: REENACTMENT IN CONTEMPORARY PHOTOGRAPHY”

The Getty Center
1200 Getty Center Drive
March 12–June 9, 2019

Curated by Arpad Kovacs

In postmodernist critical writings of the 1980s, the catchphrase staged photography was sometimes used to describe the works of artists such as Cindy Sherman and Jeff Wall, who deployed photography to record invented portraits or fictional scenarios, as opposed to depicting “real life.” This exhibition juxtaposes more than forty works created between 1985 and 2008 by seven practitioners in the genre of photographic simulation: Eileen Cowin, Christina Fernandez, Samuel Fosso, Yasumasa Morimura, Yinka Shonibare MBE, Gillian Wearing, and Qiu Zhijie. From widely different cultures and out of various motivations, these photographers all restaged events derived from personal images, photojournalism, or art history, presumably to investigate the social constructions of identity or to probe the nature of photographic representation itself. Whether this provocative grouping constitutes a serious investigation of such imagined photographic sequences or is merely the occasion for another thematic group show remains to be seen.