Saturday, April 30, 2011
Virginia Museum of Fine Arts collaborated with Aperture Foundation to produce a new collection of Sally Mann's photographs: The Flesh and the Spirit. The book documents a 2010 exhibition at the museum.
The work on display dated back to the 1970s and extended up to the present. Clearly it was chosen with the broad intention of stressing the vulnerability of the human body – the body aging, ill, even dead. Mann's own family posed most frequently, as in the sequence with her husband (above) first published in Proud Flesh of 2009.
The grouped self portraits above are from 2006-7. These are ambrotypes, "unique collodian wet-plate positives on black glass" – popular photo-technology around the time of the American Civil War.
Below, the artist photographed during the installation process at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts in front of two of the pieces shown here.