Thursday, October 22, 2009

Robert Mapplethorpe

Clip from 'K-special: Fotografen Mapplethorpe och hans mecenat', which is a program about the photographer Robert Mapplethorpe and the curator Sam Wagstaff - in English with Swedish subtitles. See the entire program here.

"Mapplethorpe was born and grew up as a Roman Catholic of English and Irish heritage in Our Lady of the Snows Parish in Floral Park, Queens, New York. He studied for a B.F.A. from the Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, where he majored in graphic arts, though he dropped out in 1969 before finishing his degree.

Mapplethorpe took his first photographs soon thereafter using a Polaroid camera. In the mid-1970s, he acquired a Hasselblad medium-format camera and began taking photographs of a wide circle of friends and acquaintances, including artists, composers, and socialites.

In the 1980s he refined his aesthetic, photographing statuesque male and female nudes, delicate flower still lifes, and highly formal portraits of artists and celebrities."
-- read further here.

We saw the fantastic exhibition Mapplethorpe: Polaroids when it was on at Modern Art Oxford, and thoroughly thoroughly enjoyed it.

This documentary about Mapplethorpe, the curator Sam Wagstaff, and their influence on the 1970s and 80s New York art scence is pretty great too. Watch the clip above or click for the full program.

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