Description of Claude Cahun artwork
This artwork is a 1921 self-portrait by the French photographer Claude Cahun or Lucy Schwob. The artwork shows her in a black and white photograph. She is wearing a suit and apparently trying to look like a man or from neutral gender, she is looking directly at the camera with a manly expression. The overall painting is dull and has a grey background. The woman has no hair and pointy ears, while her expression is serious and emotionless. The painting is untitled.
Many self-portrait of Claude Cahun show how she photographed herself as a man, as a woman and as an unspecified gender.
Analysis of Claude Cahun artwork
Claude Cahun or Lucy Schwob used to take self-portraits dressed as characters from both genders…show more content… There is emphasis in the subjects face because it looks very lit up and contrasting with the black suit. The image is monotonous and dull and has a simple grey background setting. The photograph is balanced and clean, only a man in a black suit with a white pocket square. The fact that the head is shaved and that the black suit flattens the chest, brings into inquiry the subject sexual identity. This artwork and many other self-portraits of Cahun, places the question of how a human being knows who and she/he is (Katharine, Conley,…show more content… They have different settings but both settings are confined, this way they expresses the limited role of the woman in the period when the artworks were made. In both artworks the subjects are also looking out of the confines of the portraits. None of the expressions of both women look happy but rather serious and dull. Claude Cahun Untitled artwork is surrealist while the other one is not and looks like a movie scene.
The portraits originate from very different time periods; the Claude Cahun work is nearly 60 years earlier than the untitled film still #3. The 1921 artwork is so surrealist and the setting is so confined that it would be much more difficult to guess the time period in the Claude Cahun photograph than the 1977 artwork. Which can be guessed by the clothing and environment of the woman.
The statements these artworks are doing are similar but still different. While the Cindy Sherman’s artwork is criticizing Hollywood and the media, Claude Cahun is raising a question about sexual identity.
History of photography