The Ballad of Sexual Dependancy by Nan Goldin

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The Ballad of Sexual Dependency is the diary I let people read. My written Diaries are private; they form a closed document of my world and allow me the distance to analyse it. My visual diary is public; it expands from its subjective basis with the input of other people. Nan Goldin’s photographs stand as a obsessional recording of her life, as she puts it ‘I don’t ever want to loose the real memory of anyone again’. Goldin manoeuvred into a career in art photography after she was given a camera in her teens, a few years after the death of her sister. Her early photographs are taken more as overt play than photographs with a concept of their own. Poses for the camera are taken after the fashion shots of Vogue or Elle and experiments with the new ability to become involved with a glamorised world. But in the act of recording, Goldin discovered the worth of her fantasised glamour world. The hard visual copies of memories acted as a constant presence, a very important story for Goldin to be able to claim as hers and hers alone. Another point for her recordings lies in the glamorisation of photography itself. Goldin’s work not only records her social life but the photographs move her life iconically into a narrative glamorisation, mirroring the fantasy world of mass media, cinema and popular music. This made the work filmic. Goldin present’s her work as a slide show, at every showing the editing of the photographs changing, a sound track is provided by a backing tape, filled with emotionally loaded music. The nature of Goldin’s work has created a feedback- just as when two mirrors are held facing each other. Culture built the conditions for Goldin’s view on life, freed from her parents at fourteen she was allowed to experience the cultural and sexual awakening of the Sixties, and become wrapped up in it. Given a camera she was able to emulate and directly become involved in the cultural revolution of her time, by photographing the realism of her life. Later this in...
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