The Work of Cindy Sherman

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No other artist has ever made as extended or complex career of presenting herself to the camera as has Cindy Sherman. Yet, while all of her photographs are taken of Cindy Sherman, it is impossible to class call her works self-portraits. She has transformed and staged herself into as unnamed actresses in undefined B movies, make-believe television characters, pretend porn stars, undifferentiated young women in ambivalent emotional states, fashion mannequins, monsters form fairly tales and those which she has created, bodies with deformities, and numbers of grotesqueries. Her work as been praised and embraced by both feminist political groups and apolitical mainstream art. Essentially, Sherman's photography is part of the culture and investigation of sexual and racial identity within the visual arts since the 1970's. It has been said that, "The bulk of her work…has been constructed as a theater of femininity as it is formed and informed by mass culture…(her) pictures insist on the aporia of feminine identity tout court, represented in her pictures as a potentially limitless range of masquerades, roles, projections" (Sobieszek 229). Born in Glen Ridge, New Jersey, Cindy Sherman grew up in suburban Huntington Beach on Long Island, the youngest of five children and had a regular American childhood. She was very self-involved, found of costumes, and given to spending hours at the mirror, playing with makeup (Schjeldahl 7). Cindy Sherman attended the state University College at Buffalo, New York, where she first started to create art in the medium of painting. During her college years, she painted self-portraits and realistic copies of images that she saw in photographs and magazines. Yet, she became less, and less interested in painting and became increasingly interested in conceptual, minimal, performance, body art, and film alternatives (Sherman 5). Sherman's very first introductory photography class in college was a complete failure for she had difficulties

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