back to blog

Anne Collier at MCA Chicago

8d4abak-7332_COL_DevelopingTray-2-Grey

Anne Collier, Developing Tray #2 (Grey), 2009. Courtesy the artist; Anton Kern Gallery, New York; Corvi-Mora, London; Marc Foxx Gallery, Los Angeles.

9c0e5ak10094_COL_Negative_California

Anne Collier, Negative (California), 2013. Courtesy the artist; Anton Kern Gallery, New York; Corvi-Mora, London; Marc Foxx Gallery, Los Angeles.

4788ddoublemarilyn

Double Marilyn, 2007. Chromogenic print. Collection of Dean Valentine, Los Angeles.

50499cutcolor

Cut (Color), 2009. Chromogenic print. Collection of Pauline Karpidas, New York

60885charming

Untitled (This Charming Man), 2009. Chromogenic print. Collection of Anton Kern, New York.

a91458x10lynda

8 x 10 (Lynda), 2007. Chromogenic print. Courtesy the artist and Anton Kern Gallery, New York.

afccfak-8640_COL_OpenBook7LightYears

Anne Collier, Open Book #7 (Light Years), 2011. Courtesy the artist; Anton Kern Gallery, New York; Corvi-Mora, London; Marc Foxx Gallery, Los Angeles.

bb83ewomanstern

Woman With A Camera (The Last Sitting, Bert Stern), 2009. Chromogenic print. Collection of Martin and Rebecca Eisenberg.

ee2efeyecolorneg

Eye (Enlargement of Color Negative), 2007. Chromogenic print. Collection of Randy Slifka, New York.

Last week Anne Collier’s solo show opened at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, the photographer’s first major museum exhibition, surveying her work since 2002. In Collier’s work, the camera itself becomes an object that must be examined through photographs, often leading her to photograph photographs, whether they are her own or from others. She often isolates commercial images to point out their sublimated politics. Her longstanding “Woman with a Camera” series reverses our gaze on ad-happy models or recognizable actresses like Cheryl Tiegs posing with cameras. By making these images the still-life subjects of photographs, Collier forces us to reconsider who is looking at whom as well as confound the object and the observer. She makes sly use of visual language by allusion, as in her image Cut, a photographic representation of the notorious eye-slicing scene of Un Chien Andalou: a photograph of the photographer’s eye is bisected whilst trapped in a paper cutter. In her recurring images of eyes, often also presented as photographs of photographs, she places the act of seeing at the forefront of her work, in a kind of Russian-doll effect. The exhibition, which runs through March 8, 2015, is aptly titled Anne Collier, in the same self-reflexive impulse that characterizes her photographs.

 

Sign up for Aperture's weekly newsletter: