LaChapelle: Heaven to Hell (Köln, 2010), pp. 338-9
In Evidence of a Miraculous Event, LaChapelle re-creates Christ’s resurrection: a modern-day Jesus stands in a graffitied room and shows his stigmata to his astonished disciples, the crown of thorns still on his head from his crucifixion. In Loaves and Fishes (Lot 172), LaChapelle depicts the same modern Jesus offering Wonder Bread and raw fish to his followers, a clear reference to the gospel story of the feeding of the 5,000. In LaChapelle’s renditions, Jesus’s disciples are cast as multi-ethnic youth of rap and hip-hop culture, carefully clothed by fashion designer Patty Wilson. Conversely, his Jesus is always dressed in the garments favored by the Old Master painters.
The Jesus is My Homeboy images are representative of the glossy fashion and celebrity photography characteristic of LaChapelle’s best work. The series was originally published in 2003 in the British magazine i-D and exhibited at Robilant +Voena, London, in 2008.
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