A few weeks ago, I had the opportunity to take an excursion to New York City for the day. I took a bus from Boston, which departed at 6 am. The ride was comfortable & with the free wifi that was provided, it a very pleasant journey. We arrived in Manhattan around 10:30 & I was able to get off the bus on 5th Ave., very near the Guggenheim Museum, where I was headed.
I had come to see the Francesca Woodman Exhibition.
March 16–June 13, 2012
This remarkable young woman, born into a family of artists in 1958, began her interest in photography at the early age of 13. By the time, of her tragic death, at age 22 in 1981, she had become a mature & focused artist. The exhibit spans the entirety of her short career, & includes more than 120 vintage photographs, ranging from her earliest student experiments to her late, large-scale blueprint studies of caryatid-like figures for the ambitious Temple project (1980).
The photographs are eerily beautiful. Using herself as a model, Woodman explored in particular the genre of self-portraiture. There is, of course, a sadness to the photos, knowing that this extraordinary talent would be lost to suicide at such a young age.
To learn more about Francesca Woodman, I recommend the documentary film TheWoodman's by C. Scott Willis.