(STOCKBRIDGE, Mass.) – A Body Biography, a 40 year retrospective of works by Pulitzer Prize-nominated photographer and activist Matuschka, is on display at Sohn Fine Art through July 1, 2013. There will be a reception for the artist on Saturday, May 18, from 4 to 7pm. The exhibition marks the 20th anniversary of Matuschka’s landmark work, Beauty Out of Damage, an unflinching and riveting self-portrait that rocketed Matuschka to international fame when it was featured on the cover of the New York Times Sunday Magazine in 1993
The public’s response to Beauty Out of Damage was so great when first published 20 years ago, Beauty Out of Damage became one of the most controversial covers in the New York Times’ history. It was for this image that Matuschka was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize and was chosen Person of the Week with Peter Jennings.
In conjunction with the exhibition, a public artist’s presentation and book signing will be held at Berkshire Museum in Pittsfield on June 22 at 2:30. Matushcka will also teach a two-day workshop “Exploration of Image Making and Personal Expression” on June 22 and June 23 at Berkshire Museum. Sign-up for this course takes place at Sohn Fine Art.
The exhibition is part of Sohn Fine Art’s Master Artist Series (MAS) program.
A Body Biography is a kind of homecoming for Matuschka, who began her exhibiting career at the Lenox Library in 1972. Matuschka first came to the area as a student, and later became Clemens Kalischer’s photography assistant. It was in the Berkshires that her appreciation for Gilded Age ‘cottages,’ both ruined and restored, blossomed. Working alongside masters of her generation, Matuschka also became a skillful printer, specializing in chemically manipulating and toning photographic prints. When years later, Matuschka was diagnosed with breast cancer and underwent an amputation, her visceral understanding of beauty in ruin and restoration came to a creative head, resulting in a body of work that gained her a role as a leading photographer and icon of the breast cancer movement.
“A Body Biography is a rare opportunity to experience this important work in a uniquely intimate setting and in the greater context of her decade spanning career,” says Sohn Fine Art owner and curator, Cassandra Sohn. Additional works in the exhibition include mixed media photography, where Matuschka has “painted”, “toned” or “manipulated” her photographs, creating one-of-a-kind pieces that pay homage to her artistic expressions not only of photography but of additional medias as well. The extensive variety of work has one unifying theme running through it – her body; whether it is her first self portrait in 1971, her “Ruins” series from the 1980s, the “Modified Radical” portfolio of the 1990s or the “Androgony” series post-2000, the theme is re-interpreted from abstracts to portraits, comedic to hauntingly beautiful.
In conjunction with the exhibition, Matuschka will discuss the themes of ruin and restoration, and her use of her body as a political metaphor at Berkshire Museum in Pittsfield on June 22, 2013, at 2:30. A special showing of a short film illuminating the breadth and depth of Matuschka’s 40-year career will precede the talk. Admission to this event is the entrance fee to the Museum, $13. Tickets can be pre-bought at Berkshire Museum.
In addition to the exhibition at Sohn Fine Art and presentation, Matuschka will lead an artist’s workshop “Exploration of Image Making and Personal Expression” at Berkshire Museum on Saturday June 22 (9– noon) & Sunday, June 23 (1– 5pm). The workshop will include student portfolio reviews, a survey of Matuschka’s influences, assignments to “take your work further” including hand-toning giclee prints, and a presentation on Matuschka’s various approaches to image alteration and the difference between “making” a picture and “taking” one. Interested participants may find more information and register at Sohn Fine Art. Early registration is recommended, as participation is limited.
Artist, photographer and activist Matuschka has been recognized with numerous honors, citations, and awards, including the Rachel Carson Award, Gilda Radner Award, and inclusion in Life Books’ “One Hundred Photographs that Changed the World.” Her works are held by private and public collections through out the world, including the Center for Political Graphics, Cincinnati Museum of Art, Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum, Flemming Museum, Hallisch-Frankischen Museum, Henry Buhl Foundation, Musee de l’Elysee, National Museum of Women in the Arts, Woodstock Center for Photography and the World Press Photo Foundation. Matuschka University appearances include Harvard, Columbia, The Contemporary Museum of Art, Fort Lauderdale and The Art Cultural Center, Malaga, Spain. Selected publications include The Boston Globe, Chicago Tribune, Der Spiegel, Die Zeit, The Guardian, Glamour, MacClean’s, Marie Claire, Encyclopaedia Britannica, The New York Post, Oxford University Press, The San Francisco Chronicle, Time, The Washington Post, and Vogue.
Founded in 2011, by photographer and gallerist Cassandra Sohn, Sohn Fine Art is located in the heart of the Berkshires in Stockbridge. The Gallery specializes in contemporary photography of emerging and mid-career artists. Sohn Fine Art also offers a full spectrum of photographic services including Fine Art Archival Giclee Printing, Photography, and Photographic Workshops.
A program of Sohn Fine Art, the Master Artist Series (MAS) contributes to the cultural vitality of the Berkshires by promoting broader understanding of and community engagement with photographic mediums through exhibitions, lectures, and workshops featuring world class photographers. For more information, visit Sohn Fine Art.