Sunday, August 23, 2009

Laurie Simmons: Tourism

I know I recently posted a series of photographs by Laurie Simmons, but I am posting more now. I just can't get enough of her work.

laurie simmons tourism parthenon
Laurie Simmons, Tourism: Parthenon, 1984

laurie simmons tourism las vegas
Laurie Simmons, Tourism: Las Vegas, 1984

laurie simmons tourism pink stonehenge
Laurie Simmons, Tourism: Pink Stonehenge, 1984

laurie simmons tourism brasil jesus christ
Laurie Simmons, Tourism: Brasil, Jesus Christ at Corcovado Rock, 1984

laurie simmons tourism green stonehenge
Laurie Simmons, Tourism: Green Stonehenge, 1984

laurie simmons tourism st basil first view
Laurie Simmons, Tourism: St. Basil / First View, 1984

laurie simmons tourism acropolis
Laurie Simmons, Tourism: Acropolis, 1984


laurie simmons tourism stardust las vegas
Laurie Simmons: Tourism: Stardust Las Vegas / Second View, 1984

laurie simmons tourism great wall of china
Laurie Simmons, Tourism: Great Wall of China, 1984

laurie simmons tourism eiffel tower


Laurie Simmons, Tourism: Eiffel Tower, 1984


Biography

Laurie Simmons was born on Long Island, New York, in 1949. She received a BFA from the Tyler School of Art, Philadelphia (1971). Simmons stages photographs and films with paper dolls, finger puppets, ventriloquist dummies, and costumed dancers as “living objects,” animating a dollhouse world suffused with nostalgia and colored by an adult’s memories, longings, and regrets. Simmons’s work blends psychological, political and conceptual approaches to art making, transforming photography’s propensity to objectify people, especially women, into a sustained critique of the medium. Mining childhood memories and media constructions of gender roles, her photographs are charged with an eerie, dreamlike quality. On first glance her works often appear whimsical, but there is a disquieting aspect to Simmons’s child’s play as her characters struggle over identity in an environment in which the value placed on consumption, designer objects, and domestic space is inflated to absurd proportions. Simmons’s first film, “The Music of Regret” (2006), extends her photographic practice to performance, incorporating musicians, professional puppeteers, Alvin Ailey dancers, Hollywood cinematographer Ed Lachman, and actress Meryl Streep. She has received many awards, including the Roy Lichtenstein Residency in the Visual Arts at the American Academy in Rome (2005); and fellowships from the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation (1997) and the National Endowment for the Arts (1984). She has had major exhibitions at the Museum of Modern Art, New York (2006); Baltimore Museum of Art (1997); San Jose Museum of Art, California (1990); Walker Art Center, Minneapolis (1987); and has participated in two Whitney Biennials (1985, 1991). Simmons lives and works in New York.

33 comments:

Gabbi said...

Love her work but had never seen her tourism series... really childish, but I like the way she uses dolls and porcelain figurines in her photography. Reminds me of when I was a kid playing with my dolls. :)

Hope you're having a lovely Sunday!!

Iva said...

gosh her work is so amazing, I'm loving this tourism series. I'm so amazed at her thinking, I can't believe this was done in 84?! wow, she is such a talent!

Hope you are having a great weekend!

{and 3rd time is the charm over here lol! stupid wireless! GERRR}

bananas. said...

wow those dolls have seen more of the world than i have...

a little jealous here...

Sam said...

Mmmmm! Very interesting work - a bit disturbing for me for some reason. Disturbing in so far as I'm a little repelled by them but fascinated at the same time - What's all that about!!! Maybe it's the audacity of the plastic dolls and the vintage like photos!! AWESOME !!!

Elizabeth Marie said...

"animating a dollhouse world suffused with nostalgia and colored by an adult’s memories, longings, and regrets."

badass. I think it's awesome and at first my lil hungover mind could not comprehend why these dolls, as with blowup ones, are gettin more play then me...

Happpyyyyy Sunday luvvverrr!!!

Lee said...

Love the pink stonehendge. Totally cool.

...love Maegan said...

so cool. love. them.

...love Maegan said...

um, liz's comment ...hilarity.

Missy said...

Love all of this! Great!

Vivienne said...

Ya know... not my favorite artist of the artists that you've spotlighted. Sorry.

However, I do prefer her photos to the frightening outfits the Jackson 5 are wearing in the previous post.

JennyMac said...

Totally artistic and cool.

thereddeer said...

Love the little dolls.

Hit 40 said...

The critique summed up from thoughts... at first whimsical then to me a little scary!!

alissa said...

i really like this series - they're blank faces add a funny aspect to it.
hope you had a good weekend :)

Char said...

very whimsical

diane said...

Bizarre. love it. no words.

diane said...

I just did a little tribute to this on my page and linked to this post. :)

Dooder City said...

I have never ever heard of her but her shit is the best! I feel like I understand exactly what she is trying to illustrate.

♥Aubrey said...

Those dolls...made of wax? Ummm...i say we create our own photos with play-doh :)-
p.s. I GAVE YOU AN AWARD ♥

Diana said...

It's so rare when a photographer makes a film about their work, but i need to check it out!
Her photography looks like she is young at heart, even if she is older. Love her, too!!

Gabby said...

Creepy but fantastic...and the comments on this post are the best! :)

Brooke said...

I LOVE these, but of course, I love everything having to do with travel. I think she captured the essence of the tourism industry, as well. Most people just robotically go from site to site, without really experiencing the area they're visiting.

down and out chic said...

i have this strange fear of dolls that come alive (blame it on my mom insisting i own porcelain dolls as a kid) and these play right on that fear. see, i just a got a little shiver up my spine.

E said...

These are awesome. Like the gnome in the postcards before Amelie. Dolls are so creepy.

Waxy said...

I like! Anything plastic going on world tour makes me smile..

jennifer from pittsburgh said...

I love this concept! It's whimsical, but has something deeper running through it too :)

Clorivak said...

These are quite cool! I wanna hang with those little ladies.

Pretty Little World said...

This work sort of reminds me of some kind of fabulous episode of The Twilight Zone -- like these three girls would be going on an amazing world tour, having all sorts of fun, only at the end of the episode to find that they're really plastic statues being posed by photos.

I feel terribly nerdy now, so I'm off to find something cool to do...

Felicia|DaLipstickBandit said...

love the first pic

one little simitopian said...

Brilliant! This lady is just full of creative ideas isn't she? I love the clever use of inanimate objects. I want to copy her ideas *sheepish grin*

K @ Blog Goggles said...

Those lucky, lucky plastic people. I'd kill for their travel itinerary!

Hanako66 said...

these are amazing!

Miss Absinthe said...

love these! :)