Metro Pictures Nov-Dec 2008. Cindy Sherman dresses for success, donning a range of disguises that masterfully evoke the absurdity
of the 'too much money, too little taste' crowd.
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Thirty years after Cindy Sherman started her untitled film still series, you would think she would not run out of characters to skewer. Her latest body of work at Metro Pictures Gallery proves that her supply of people is as fresh as ever and her eye as incisive as ever.
The huge size of these prints should indicate the high social status of the setter. Each woman is surrounded by the status symbols and put in front of the backdrop of a tasteful architecture. The message is clear; they each have too much money and too little taste.
One character’s fish lips looks like she is pulling a face on the mirror. There is a goodtime cowgirl, who just happens to own the ranch. And over the hills, Scarlet O’Hara and several creepy ladies of the manor, whose self regard belies their appearance.
In their fancy dress, the characters look like they could be on their way to a political fundraiser or a musical gala. Is she biting the hand that feeds her by poking fun at art patrons? Sherman does not care.
Sherman exposes the absurdity of excess. To their credit, the women do show some signs of aging. They have not gone overboard on the cosmetic procedures, but oblivious ugliness is the norm, despite the trappings of luxury. Her carefully manicured subjects would never dream that they were the objects of ridicule, which might make us more self-conscious about what could we be overlooking in our appearance.