Laurie Simmons opens Metro Pictures' 1998/99 season with an exhibition of new photographs that revisit the miniature elements Simmons introduced in her seminal work of the late 1970s. The new photographs are of dramatically lighted installation views of architectural models filled with furniture and occasional figures. Three larger photographs are exteriors of "buildings": a snowy fairy tale castle, a generic family house, and the front door of an ordinary post-war suburban home.
Simmons's early work acknowledged a media savvy generation adept at transcribing TV and photographic images to human scale. The current work, informed by the subsequent avalanche of computer imagery can be viewed as a surreal alternate reality. Simmons's work is a subtle confrontation with the values of culture. One group of new photographs explores a supernaturally crisp primary colored interior of an uninhabited modernist house. In another group, photographs of soap-white modern furniture (period Eames display miniatures) are scattered in ghostly versions of period nostalgia and taste. Additional images include an equally colorless silhouette of a woman or group of male figures which are simply props placed amid the furniture. A third group of pictures finds an isolated female doll submerged to her neck in water. Water, whether a bathtub, pool, or lake, is a recurrent theme in Simmons's photographs.
Laurie Simmons works and lives in New York City and teaches at Yale and Columbia. In 1997 The Baltimore Museum of Art organized a retrospective that surveyed twenty years of Simmons's photographs. Her work has been included in two Whitney Biennials, L.A. MOCA's A Forest of Signs, and is in virtually all exhibitions and publications of photographic history surveying the art of the 80's and 90's. Her photographs are represented in numerous international collections including the major New York museums; the Museum of Modern Art, the Whitney Museum of American Art, and the Metropolitan Museum.
For further information please contact Jeff Gauntt.
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