Catherine Opie is a social documentary photographer of international renown whose primary artistic concerns are community and identity—gender, sexual, or otherwise. She rose to prominence in the early 1990s with an extraordinary series of portraits of her close friends within the Los Angeles S-M community. Her Being and Having series of 1991 consists of thirteen portraits of the artist's lesbian friends, donning theatrical moustaches, goatees, and “masculine” names, (Papa Bear, Wolf, and so on), while another series from that period, Portraits, offers up lushly colored, sympathetic images of her “marginalized” subjects—cross-dressers, tattooed dominatrixes, female-to-male transsexuals, drag kings, and other body manipulators.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Visual Arts and Performing Arts