7. Catherine Opie | Commissioned Portrait

40,000–60,000 USD


Catherine Opie
b. 1961
Commissioned Portrait
Pigment Print
20 by 15 in. (50.8 by 31.8 cm)

Courtesy of the artist; Regen Projects, Los Angeles; and Lehmann Maupin, New York, Hong Kong, and Seoul

This donation, by artist Catherine Opie, includes one portrait sitting at Catherine’s studio in downtown Los Angeles for one (1) person, and one (1) 20 x 15 inch signed photographic pigment print. The session will normally last 45 minutes and Cathy will choose the final portrait. The editing/printing process can take 2-4 weeks after the sitting. The print will either be delivered or mailed to the sitter or a framer. Mounting and framing is not included. The sitting must take place within one year from the purchase date.

‘Opie is so prominent in the Southern California art world that friends call her “the mayor of Los Angeles,” but her photographs have remained quietly subversive […] It is as if Opie were able to photograph aspects of people and mini-malls and Yosemite Falls that are invisible to the rest of the world. Her pictures ask how sure we are about what we know to be true.’ — Ariel Levy, The New Yorker

Catherine Opie (b. 1961, Sandusky, OH; lives in Los Angeles) is known for her powerfully dynamic photography that examines the ideals and norms surrounding the culturally constructed American dream and American identity. She first gained recognition in the 1990s for her series of studio portraits titled Being and Having, in which she photographed gay, lesbian, and transgender individuals drawn from her circle of friends and artists. Opie has traveled extensively across the country exploring the diversity of America’s communities and landscapes, documenting quintessential American subjects—high school football players and the 2008 presidential inauguration—while also continuing to display America’s subcultures through formal portraits. Using dramatic staging, Opie presents cross-dressers, same-sex couples, and tattooed, scarred, and pierced bodies in intimate photographs that evoke traditional Renaissance portraiture—images of power and respect. In her portraits and landscapes, Opie establishes a level of ambiguity of both identity and place by exaggerating masculine or feminine characteristics, or by exaggerating distance, cropping, or blurring her landscapes.

Opie received a B.F.A. from San Francisco Art Institute in 1985, and an M.F.A. from CalArts in 1988. Opie has received numerous awards and fellowships, including the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Guggenheim Fellowship, Photography (2019), Aperture Foundation Award (2018), Smithsonian Archives of American Art Medal (2016), Women’s Caucus for Art President’s Award for Lifetime Achievement (2009). United States Artists Fellowship (2006), San Francisco Art Institute President’s Award for Excellence (2006), Larry Aldrich Award (2004), and the CalArts Alpert Award in the Arts (2003). She has been a professor of fine art at the University of California, Los Angeles, since 2001 and serves on the board of directors of The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts and the board of trustees of the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles.

For inquiries, please email us at eneckes@aspenartmuseum.org .