Performing for the Camera - the exhibition catalogue from Tate available to buy at Museum Bookstore

Performing for the Camera

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'From a femmed-up Marcel Duchamp to Joseph Beuys in a fisherman’s vest, there is plenty of humour in this survey of artists acting up for the lens – but it’s the theatre of ordinary life that moves the most' - The Guardian

A richly illustrated book exploring the unique relationship between photography and performance

Photography has been used to capture performances since its invention – from the stars of the Victorian stage to the art happenings of the 1960s, and today’s trend for selfies.

This lavishly illustrated publication offers an essential survey of the unique relationship between photography and performance, engaging with serious, provocative and sensational subjects, as well as humour, improvisation and irony. It shows how photographs have captured performances by important artists including Yves Klein and Yayoi Kusama, as well as highlighting ground-breaking collaborations between photographers, performers and dancers. Exploring how artists such as Francesca Woodman and Erwin Wurm have used photography as a stage on which to perform, it also reveals how figures from Cindy Sherman and Hannah Wilke to Marcel Duchamp and Samuel Fosso have utilised the camera to consider questions of identity.

From marketing and self-promotion to the investigation of gender and self-portraiture, Performing for the Camera brings together over 300 images by more than sixty international artists. Vintage prints, large-scale works and series, marketing posters and Instagram images all contribute to a wide-ranging exploration of how performance artists use photography and how photography can itself be a form of performance.

  • Author: Simon Baker, curator of photography and international art and Fiontán Moran, assistant curator at Tate Modern
  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Date published: February 2016
  • Language: English
  • ISBN: 978-1849764001
  • Product Dimensions: 26.5 x 21.5 cm