Give Me Some Moments
‘Give Me Some Moments’ follows the artist’s critically acclaimed 2019 exhibition ‘Darkening’ at Hauser & Wirth’s 22nd Street gallery in New York. In 2019, Simpson was awarded the esteemed J. Paul Getty Medal, honoring her extraordinary contribution to practice, understanding, and support of the arts.
The new collages feature a series of female and male protagonists, often the focal point of the compositions, who Simpson splices with architectural features, animals, and natural elements to create scenarios that are at once poetic and arresting.
In these collages, Simpson uses the devices of extreme cropping and close-ups to hone in on sections of the bodies portrayed. As she explains, ‘the notion of fragmentation, especially of the body, is prevalent in our culture, and it’s reflected in my works. We’re fragmented not only in terms of how society regulates our bodies but in the way we think about ourselves.’
In ‘Flames’ (2019), Simpson forefronts women’s heads and inserts scenes of burning buildings in place of advertised coiffed wigs, while in ‘California’ (2019) she intertwines geological source material from a 1931 textbook with domestic scenery, encouraging new narratives to emerge from the unexpected settings.
While under quarantine, Simpson has continued to engage the analog nature of the collage process, directly cutting and pasting from Ebony magazines, resulting in three new surreal portraits that are featured in this exhibition: ‘Solar Glare’ (2020), ‘Walk with Me’ (2020), and ‘Lyra night sky styled in NYC’ (2020).
About the artist
Born in Brooklyn, Lorna Simpson came to prominence in the 1980s with her pioneering approach to conceptual photography. Simpson’s early work – particularly her striking juxtapositions of text and staged images – raised questions about the nature of representation, identity, gender, race and history that continue to drive the artist’s expanding and multi-disciplinary practice today.