Bard News & Events

Press Release


Emily Darrow

ANNANDALE-ON-HUDSON, N.Y.--Mirror Image, an exhibition that shows some of the ways in which artists have explored ideas related to self-portraiture, will be on view this summer at the Center for Curatorial Studies at Bard College from June 23 to September 8. There will be an opening reception for Mirror Image and Dave Muller: Connections on Sunday, June 23, with free bus transportation from New York City available.

Many of the works in Mirror Image, decidedly blur the line between straightforward self-presentation and the assumption of a more-or-less fictional persona. The exhibition explores this area of ambiguity, featuring work in media ranging from photography and video to etching and collage.

"Since the Renaissance, artists have appeared in their own work in ways that go far beyond straightforward self-portraiture," said Russell Ferguson, deputy director of exhibitions and programs and chief curator at UCLA Hammer Museum, who organized Mirror Image. "This exhibition is a highly eclectic and very partial sampling of work that participates in this long tradition."

Although the artists' images shown in this exhibition are accurate reflections of their appearances, they often assume alternate identities. Robert Rauschenberg's monumental triple print, Autobiography (1968), does not shy away from the mythic. While the central panel's spiral of text gives a factual account of Rauschenberg's life and career, the powerful images that surround it--most notably the iconic photograph of the artist on rollerskates with a huge parachute flaring out behind him--suggest a persona bigger than the merely personal.

Christian Marclay's series of posters from 1994, False Advertising, takes self-presentation in a more overtly fictional direction. Posing as different types of musicians, Marclay presents himself in posters for apparently real concerts. Nikki S. Lee also takes on different personae in the course of her work, but she takes the performative element much further. For the duration of a particular project, she fully inhabits her role as a member of a particular group in society. In this exhibition she appears as a yuppie and as a player in the world of hip-hop.

Among the artists whose work is included in the exhibition are Mark Bradford, Patty Chang, James Ensor, General Idea, Francisco Goya, Richard Hawkins, Larry Johnson, Martin Kippenberger, Oskar Kokoschka, and Gillian Wearing.

Works for the exhibition are drawn from the Hammer Museum collection and from the Marieluise Hessel Collection, on permanent loan to the Center for Curatorial Studies, as well as the Center's permanent collection. The exhibition was organized by the UCLA Hammer Museum, Los Angeles. The LLWW Foundation has provided generous support for Mirror Image. Additional support has been provided by the Friends of the Center for Curatorial Studies.

On June 23, the day of the exhibition openings, free bus transportation will be available from New York City to the Center for Curatorial Studies. A chartered bus will leave from SoHo at 11:00 a.m. and depart from the Center at 4:00 p.m. Reservations are required and can be made by calling the Center at 845-758-7598 no later than Friday, June 21. Transportation is provided through the generosity of Howard and Donna Stone.

The museum is open to the public, without charge, Wednesdays through Sundays from 1:00 to 5:00 p.m. An artists' reception will take place on Sunday, June 23, from 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. For further information, call the CCS at 845-758-7598, e-mail, or visit the website

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This event was last updated on 06-06-2002