VIDEO: Robert Mapplethorpe at Sean Kelly Gallery | ADAA

New York Art Scene through the eyes of Robert Mapplethorpe.

This year at the ADAA: The Art Show the gallery is showing a single artist in their booth. Maureen Bray, Director at Sean Kelly Gallery talked to galleryIntell about the lesser-known body of work by the quintessential New York photographer Robert Mapplethorpe.

Mapplethorpe, a native New Yorker lived and worked in New York City in the 1960’s and 80’s when the city’s art scene was a dynamic collective of bright stars: young and established painters, sculptors, writers, dancers and photographers, all eager to establish their vision and proclaim their creative voices. So many unique personalities, so many voices and so many visions. As Maureen Bray pointed out in our interview, Mapplethorpe’s photographic portraits make it apparent that there was a certain trust between the model and the photographer that resulted in honest and revealing portrayals of the person behind the personality. We are no longer looking at Willem de Kooning, the famed master of Abstract Expressionism, but at a warm portrait of a smiling man in overalls with a strap sliding off his shoulder.

Robert Rauschenberg appears at once rigid and in motion as he stands facing the camera. He looks tense and uncomfortable, his shoulders drawn up to his head. But perhaps the most interesting detail in this image is his right hand. His long fingers outstretched in an awkward gesture. Roy Lichtenstein is in front of one his paintings, looking into the camera as if he is about to speak – another image that captures stationary subjects that appear to be in motion. Lee Krasner stand in profile, full of strength and deep in thought, resting on a support, her right hand extended to reveal a contemplative gesture. Brice Marden is captured in his Bowery street studio right around the time of his first show at the Guggenheim Museum. But perhaps the most interesting of them all is the fabulous still of Louise Bourgeois…Watch the interview till the very end to see the full image.

Interview transcript on page 2

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