Yasumasa Morimura, Jane Fonda 1, Barbarella, 1995
Self-portraiture continues to be one of the most mysterious themes in art, especially in photography. This 1995 self-portrait by Japanese conceptual photographer Yasumasa Morimura is one of my all time favorites....to think that a 44 year old Japanese man would dress up as a 31 year old American actress who dressed up for her role in a futuristic science fiction movie just amuses me to no end.
For over three decades Yasumasa Morimura has been exploring cultural and sexual appropriation, dealing with image consumption, identity and desire. With extensive use of props, costumes, make-up, and digital manipulation, he transforms himself into recognizable characters, ranging from Brigitte Bardot and Marilyn Monroe, to the Mona Lisa or Vermeer's "girl with the pearl earring." The resulting images challenge the associations that viewers have with the subjects, while also commenting on Japan's complex absorption of Western culture.
This unique Polaroid print is signed on the margin by the artist, and measures 10 x 13 centimeters, and is framed. It was part of his series On Self-Portrait Through the Looking Glass.