VIDEO: Cindy Sherman Channels Old Hollywood Glamour at Metro Pictures

It's the artist's first new work in four years.

After a four-year hiatus, Cindy Sherman is back at Metro Pictures to inaugurate the gallery’s newly-renovated West 24th Street space with a photo series centered around the fraying edges of Hollywood glitz and glamour.

Her subjects, aging actresses struggling to stay relevant in the twilight of their careers, hearken back to screen sirens such as Gloria Swanson and Greta Garbo. The artist has admitted that the new series of movie publicity photos is heavily influenced by her own struggle to accept the aging process. It is perhaps her most personal work yet.

Sherman rose to fame on the strength of her “Untitled Film Stills” (1977–80). The 69 black and white images cast the artist in a variety of scenarios inspired by B-movie heroines and the inherent clichés of film noir. In the years since, Sherman has continued to appropriate imagery from art and culture, and has played a variety of roles, from an ingénue, a terrifying clown, and grotesque amalgamation of body parts. By transforming herself into a range of characters, Sherman offers a pointed commentary on how women are portrayed and packaged in society.

A group of 21 of Sherman’s “Untitled Film Stills” sold for $6.7 million at Christie’s New York in 2014, setting a record for photography at auction, according to the artnet Price Database. Sherman is also responsible for the world’s second-most expensive individual photo sold at auction, Untitled #96, a 1981 image of the artist lying on tile floor that fetched $3.9 million at Christie’s New York in 2011. Only Andreas Gursky’s Rhein II has ever surpassed it.

The Metro Pictures show isn’t Sherman’s only big project this year. Collector and philanthropist Eli Broad, who claims to be one of the artist’s first collectors, will offer a new retrospective of her work at the Broad Museum in Los Angeles, June 11–October 2, 2016.

Cindy Sherman” is on view at Metro Pictures, 519 West 24th Street, New York, May 5–June 11, 2016. 

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