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ANJA NIEMI (B. 1976)
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ANJA NIEMI (B. 1976)

The Backyard, 2014

Details
ANJA NIEMI (B. 1976)
The Backyard, 2014
chromogenic print
signed, titled, dated and numbered '3/3' in ink on photographer's credit label (frame backing board)
image: 27 ½ x 39 ½ in. (69.9 x 100.4 cm.)
sheet: 34 ¾ x 46 in. (88.2 x 116.7 cm.)
This work is number three from the sold-out edition of three.
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VAT rate of 20% is payable on hammer price and buyer's premium
Post lot text
Norwegian photographer Anja Niemi explores facets of female identity through atmospheric, carefully constructed scenes which she stages, shoots and acts in entirely alone. Artifice and hyperreality jostle in her images, which are often undercut with a sense of mystery or unease lying beneath their immaculate surfaces. The Backyard is from a series called Darlene & Me. As Niemi explains, the story ‘started with the content of a suitcase from 1959 … The case belonged to a beauty counsellor named Darlene and contained makeup samples, brochures and the receipts from her sales. Most of the samples appeared to be untouched, but there were clear traces of her fingers in the two lipstick colours Strawberry Festival and Princess Pink. In August 1960 Darlene sold a jar of Liquid Beauty and one Temptress’s Hairspray, both were to herself. After that she made no more sales. The case left me with a feeling of a woman’s failed attempt at success, and a strong sense of who got in her way. The woman I envisioned became the only character of my next series, Darlene & Me. Isolated in a rented house in the Californian desert, I took on the part of Darlene to tell the story of my fictional character’s intricate relationship to herself. Darlene & Me portrays two women, photographed together in displays of conflict or simply in each other’s company whether in agony or comfort. The two are, of course the same woman.’

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