Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Diana, Princess of Whales

Final examination time. For one of my classes, my examination consists of 10 quotations or images from class material that the students need to identity (author/artist and title) and analyze in a short paragraph. In class, we viewed an excerpt from the PBS Art 21 series about the photographer Hiroshi Sugimoto, who has an amazing series in which he photographs wax figures. (You can see more of his work here.) These photos are a great point of entry into a discussion about how photography can create an illusion and obscure reality by presenting a representation that seems more real than its subject. (Who has ever mistaken a wax figure for a real person?)
The title of this work is quite straightforward: "Diana, Princess of Wales." Two of my students on their exams called it "Diana, Princess of Whales," which I think is fantastic.

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