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Nan Goldin, Officially Past Her Time

May 15, 2009


Paz De La Huerta/photo by Susan M. Kirschbaum

Paz De La Huerta/photo by Susan M. Kirschbaum

My first experience with Nan Goldin sickened me. Over a decade ago her seminal work — the portraits she took of ambisexual friends, fucking, shitting, dying in drug fused squats –reached into my core like a stinking rubber fist. That’s why they mattered. She shook my glammed up, hammed up reality with brutal truth. She doled out her therapy cold. I admired her questioning, facing her fears with a camera. Document now. Never forget.   She created in the moment of her own reckoning, but now that moment has passed.

V Magazine lured Goldin out of hiding (she’s a notorious recluse in Paris) to shoot actors Paz de la Huerta and just minted NYC thespian Nathaniel Brown, the stars of “Enter the Void, ” a new  film by Argentine director Gaspar Noe,’ debuting now in Cannes. (Vmag’s  affable Jacob Brown describes the flick fully in the link below.)  The story in short revolves around two seemingly incestuous siblings who get involved in all kinds of seedy business in underground Tokyo. But there’s  something about Goldin –who got involved in real life seedy stuff, tempting her own fate  and the pals she photographed — that seems false here, photographing actors who portray this in a fictional film by an auteur  who enjoys shocking viewers. (Noe’s last flick, “Irreversible,” caused global controversy for a graphic  rape scene that according to varying accounts, runs at least nine minutes, the victim played by  Monica Bellucci.) 

I have not seen either film so I cannot critique Noe’ as a filmmaker.  He might be a genius. But, there’s something about trendy depravity that morphs into sterility. Goldin once showed the pulp that came from life’s underbelly. Now the underbelly is staged. So let’s cut the bruised ass set up and get an ice cream instead. At least you can taste the cream.

For  the actual Goldin pix and story by lovely Jacob Brown, click here page.php?pn=NANGOLDIN

One Comment leave one →
  1. Rockstar permalink
    May 16, 2009 6:53 am


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