Cindy Sherman Untitled #410 2003 © Courtesy of the Artist and Metro Pictures


Born 1954
Nationality American
Birth place Glen Ridge

Cindy Sherman first came to prominence in the late 1970s with her Untitled Film Stills, a series of black and white photographs in which Sherman adopts stereotypical female characters from classic 1950s Hollywood films and B-movies. During the 1980s Sherman continued to examine archetypal images of women, taking on the central role in her images and moving into colour photography. Shaping her own image using a range of disguises including wigs, prosthetics, make-up and costumes, she creates characters drawn from the worlds of cinema, fashion, art history and everyday life. Avoiding self-portraiture, Sherman’s photographs cross the boundary into performance art and show how identities and stereotypes can be adopted and performed.

Glossary terms

Glossary terms


Late twentieth century art that includes a great variety of styles, so is hard to define but is often characterised as a reaction against the formalism perceived to dominate Modernism. In architecture, it describes a style which borrows from many different traditions and which contrasts with the clarity and simplicity of many modernist buildings.