Space², Providence, Rhode Island, 1975 - 1978
© Courtesy of George and Betty Woodman

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Space², Providence, Rhode Island, 1975 - 1978 1975-1978
  • Artist Rooms
Woodman is as vague as the shadows that surround her in this haunting self-portrait. The work forms part of a series entitled ‘Space2’, taken while studying at the Rhode Island School of Design in Providence, Rhode Island between 1975 and 1978. The series explores various ways of concealing or flattening her form, reminding the viewer that all photographs are distortions of reality. Woodman uses a prolonged exposure to create an ethereal, transcendental quality in the tradition of Surrealism. The photograph is not a self-portrait in the conventional sense, as it explores the possibilities of representation instead of revealing the artist’s identity.

Glossary Open

Exposure

The length of time a photosensitive surface is exposed to light. The term ‘multiple exposure’ is used to describe the act of recording more than one image on a single sheet or frame of film.

Surrealism

A literary and artistic movement founded by the poet André Breton in 1924. Many of the associated artists, such as Max Ernst and Jean Arp, had previously been involved with Dadaism. The movement sought to challenge conventions through the exploration of the subconscious mind, invoking the power of dreams and elements of chance. Cultural hierarchies were challenged by the combination of diverse elements in collages and sculptural assemblages. The movement is also notable for the collaborations between artists and writers evident in the Surrealists' many publications.

Exposure, Surrealism

Details

  • Acc. No. AR00349
  • Medium Photograph, gelatine silver print on paper
  • Size 13.90 x 13.90 cm (paper 25.20 x 20.20 cm) (framed: 45.80 x 40.20 x 2.00 cm)
  • Credit ARTIST ROOMS National Galleries of Scotland and Tate. Acquired jointly through The d'Offay Donation with assistance from the National Heritage Memorial Fund and the Art Fund 2008