Robert Mapplethorpe

Dominick and Elliot

About this artwork

This image of a ritualised, sado-masochistic, torture scene has strong art historical and Catholic overtones. A common image in medieval and renaissance painting was the martyrdom of St Peter, who was crucified upside-down (at his own bidding, because he did not wish to be compared with Christ). Mapplethorpe was well aware of the continuing influence that his Catholic upbringing had upon him and his art. As Paul Schmidt wrote in his introduction to Mapplethorpe’s notorious ‘X Portfolio’: "In a secular age, these images are all we have left. Here are the images of our modern martyrdom: our Scourgings, our Crownings with Thorns, our Crucifixions."

Updated before 2020

  • artist:
  • title:
    Dominick and Elliot
  • date created:
    1979
  • materials:
    Gelatin silver print on paper
  • measurements:
    34.00 x 34.10 cm (framed: 50.80 x 40.60 cm)
  • object type:
  • credit line:
    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
  • accession number:
    AR00199
  • gallery:
  • subject:
  • photographer:
    Antonia Reeve
This artwork is part of Artist Rooms
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Robert Mapplethorpe

Robert Mapplethorpe