Picture Perfect

22 Jan

There is currently a Robert Mapplethorpe exhibition taking place at Alison Jacques Gallery in London, running until 19th March. With his photographs, polaroids and sculptures chosen by the band Scissor Sisters, as well as works by other artists who have been influenced by Mapplethorpe, this is a rare opportunity to see these works together.

The photos chosen by the band, who have used Mapplethorpe’s imagery on their record covers in the past, cover his flower photography as well as his wonderful nudes, still-lifes and shots of leathermen and bondage. Mapplethorpe was a genius at capturing the human form, and his still-lifes and flower portraits are shot and lit with the same aesthetic appeal. If you are already a Mapplethorpe fan you will enjoy this exhibition immensely, and the works by other artists such as Matthew Barney and Scott Treleaven show how his work continues to inspire. If you are new to Mapplethorpe’s work (why has it taken you so long?), you can revel in its beauty, sensuality and kinkiness.

Though a relatively small exhibition, it is a fantastic reminder of a great artist. The works by the artists influenced by him have been cleverly chosen, keeping a sense of continuity running throughout the show. So, for lovers of great photography, (homo)erotica, stunning imagery and general kinkiness, get yourself to the exhibition and treat yourself to the great man’s work.

Black and white photograph. A human skull sits on top of crossed bones, placed on the top of a weathered column.

Robert Mapplethorpe, 'Skull and Crossbones' 1983

Robert Mapplethorpe, ‘Skull and Crossbones’ 1983


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