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February 08, 2007

Rineke Dijkstra's Park Portraits at Marian Goodman Gallery

Park Portraits by Rineke Dijkstra at the Marian Goodman Gallery should be a must see for any Rineke_dijkstra_parque_de_la_ciudadela_b contemporary photography collector. We find it pathetic amazing this artist has not yet had a major retrospective in a NYC museum. But this is all new work.. and it is one of her stronger bodies of work by this talented photographer.
FYI, The photo's in the show are only available in one  single size, edition of 10, and they are priced based on the inch print size from 25,000 to 35,000 Euro's each. My favorite from the show (Photo #1 Barcelona, 2006) was already completely sold out.

MAO readers should already know this artist, but If you're not familiar with Rineke's work.. you probably should be!  In fact my friend TeeBee and I were having a heated debate last night after seeing this show..

Who are the top (most influential) 5 or 10 female contemporary art photographers working today?

Here are the lucky few who made the MAO List

  1. Cindy Sherman
  2. Nan Goldin
  3. Sally Mann
  4. Shirin Neshat
  5. Rineke Dijkstra
  6. Candida Hofer
  7. Loretta Lux
  8. Catherine Opie
  9. Tina Barney
  10. 3 way tie.... Carrie Mae Weems, Sam Taylor-Wood, and Tracy Moffatt.

Yes.. Obviously it's completely obnoxious subjective.. but  we're interested to know who you think should be on this list?

Oh.. and before I forget... The Rineke Dijkstra Portraits book that has been out for about 8 months.. is totally amazing.. a must have for any art photography library.


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The top female art photographers working in color today? What a sad little list...

Are we defining "top" in terms of gallery sales (including sales of old work)? Or photogs at the peak of their creativity and output?

Cindy Sherman--surely not at her peak (which I consider occuring not long after her Untitled Stills, oh so long ago. Are you thinking of the Jacobs ads? Does that count as serious work?

Nan Goldin--Maybe long past her prime (or at least the youth of her subjects) or maybe growing into a more mature artist--I suspect that latter but too early to tell.

Sally Mann--I'm not sure how Mann makes this list--I'm so far out of it now living here next to the ocean (the real ocean) that the only Mann color work I can think of is some abstract stuff she did pre-fame days in the late 1970s (aside from some commercial work). Clue me in!

Sherin Neshat--I would put her more into a multi-media catagory--her best work (that I've seen) is in video. The stills seem weak and forced to me (but then again, I'm a still photographer and can be a bit picky).

Rineke Dijkstra--New Yorkers and the gallery crowd seem to love these flat, "I'm clicking the shutter just to check the focus" sort of images. Each to their own.

Candida Hofer--Even the wannabes get their 15 minutes.

Loretta Lux--Who? Do flash-in-the-pan photogs really qualify for this list?

Then again, I'm trying to put together my own list (it is still early here) and having great difficulty, so I see the challenge that you faced...


Hey Darin..
Thanks for the comment.. I agree with you.. and yes.. this is not an easy task!!

For TOP, Our point was, who will be more than just a footnote in the Art History books of the year future.. I've added a few to round out a top 10.

But one disagreement.. To me, Nan Goldin's latest work about her sister..was possibly her most powerful.. actually brought tears to my eyes...but then again, I'm a total love sick sap when it comes to this tragic stuff.

Maybe not the "top influential" but certainly the most interesting emerging female artists are (in alphabetical order)

Carrie Levy
Suellen Parker
Julia Peirone
Sarah Pickering
Andrea Shaker

And for actual top influential photogs:
Vera Luter
Sophie Calle
Sherin Neshat
Nan Goldin
Nikki Lee

I might have used different criteria than others...

MAO. You're right..
I love these Park photo's by Rineke.. they have such impressionist references.. magical!

Now as for your list... Geeeze!!

How about Laurie Simmons, Roni Horn, Nikki Lee, Vanessa Beecroft and Sophie Calle ??? Just to name a few.

No Mary Ellen Mark?

How about Lorna Simpson, Renee Cox, Roni Horn, Collier Schorr, and Justine Kurland.

as a collector I own some of these artists,in fact when I started I felt that I could collect art by women without losing the quality,
vision and skill to excute (good/bad ?art ,what is wrong with adjectives ? "They have no meaning " to paraphrase s Madonna } because in the art market place a number of people are overlooked ...but let us not go there.Over the years after being blinded by so many photographs...I would have to say that Tina Barney still seem to be one of the most Influential artists working today
and maybe her name should be mover closer to the top of the list.In all honesty I don't own anything by her...but each year ...with every new class of photographers being spit out I see that her images have been studied a lot.For those of you who love Loretta please start looking at Simon Johan not a woman but the growth is amazing someone willing to put his art and vision on the line it is not just the desire to create or the obsession to make money that makes an artist.

MAO, you forgot Aaron Krach on this list! Or is this list strictly Pre-op?

One of her stronger bodies of work? I think not. It's basically re-hash of the much stronger Tiergarten series she did in '99-'00.

I'm a huge Dijkstra fan but she seems to be slipping as of the last few years.

Word up JB!

Does anyone else find it weird to hang photos of complete strangers/someone elses kid in their home? Sometimes I don't have an issue with this kind of thing if the photo is so strong and compelling. But with these I do, I think that's telling.

I LOVE Rineke. I think she's taken some of the best portrait photos ever. She really captures the beauty of people in a very flattering way while at the same time not making any attempt to hide their less finer points.

But I think what I particularly don't like about these is the background and setting. They're so busy and so much is going on in many of the backgrounds it's really distracting. Plus somehow the more common park setting, (rowboats in the background etc.) makes it feel more like a family album snapshot. The beach portraits and soldier portraits has such a clean and beauitifully stark background that it really showed off the subject better.

Wow, these really sell for about 30-40,000 US $?

P.S. How about adding Jenny Saville to the list? Can she qualify? Her closed contact series of photographs are f#&*ing amazing! I'd put these in my top #10 list of photo series ever, regardless of gender.

Btw, it is "Shirin" not "Sherin."

Very interesting photographer is Katy Grannan. What do you think about her woks and adding her to the list? Another artist maybe - Hellen van Meene, Carla van de Puttelaar, Mona Kuhn, Ellen Kooi, Alix Smith. But, of couse they are not so influential like all artist in your list.

It may be that her work gets relatively little exposure in the "bigger picture" exposure approach to modern photography. Being from Japan may also have something to do with limited recognition here, but I think Rinko Kawauchi deserves inclusion. Her work translates in book form as well as any photographer's that I've seen.


I love Katy Grannan's approach to portraiure - a field so flooded it's getting difficult to feel impressed anymore. Even when the prints are 10 x 15'.

Hilla Becher (along with her husband Bernd) is probably as influential (if not more so) both as a photographer and as a teacher than anybody you've named on your entire list.

If you consider the work to be photographic, than Barbara Kruger has had a massive influence on photography as well, even though she's not creating much now due to her mother's illness.

And I know she's dead, but Arbus is just so overwhelming in stature that she should be at the top of any list.

This show of Dijkstra's at Goodman was very weak - even less lively and compelling than her previous exhibition of 'Tiergarten' portraits. Her most powerful works for me are still the 'Beaches,' the three images of mothers with newborn children, and the (ongoing) 'Almerisa' series. In addition, the 'Buzz Club' double channel video is also quite compelling.

Hey MAO..
Great list..I don't agree upon the exact order.. but I agree on the ones you listed.
OK..so.. now, how about one for those collectors who only like non-living artists???

JoAnn Verburg of course!

Great post. I would second the Katy Grannan and add Justine Kurland, Shirana Shahbazi, Anna Gaskell, Lisa Kereszi and Kelli Connell to the list.

An emerging list might include:
Amy Stein
Mary Farmilant
Amy Elkins
Jessica Todd Harper
Anna Shteynshleyger
and of course Zoe Strauss

Must haves on a list of influential female photgraphers; goldin, arbus, barney, and sherman.

Its hard to pick the order there. For a sense of respect Ill just put arbus up front. and let the nan and tina fight out second. I'll put cindy last just because some of her work is erratic. And to be honest the self portrait is/was brilliant but the recreation and self exploration has to remain fresh, and well the clowns were a bit of a stretch. Nan makes us think because she makes the most out of being a junky. And Tina is a most unlikely source of brilliant perspective. I feel she is under rated and if she can muster up another round of important work, has the potential of securing her place.

I dont and will never get Catherine Opie.

I was in a rather famous female new york gallerists apartment a year ago and among the plethera of art around the room was a georgous catherine opie ice house. Maybe the best one. It was stunning and forced me to look further into her. What I discovered was a bevy of regurgitation. I had seen it all before. There was nothing new. And her show of child portraits at gladstone was boring. At best she has technical savvy. Sure the photo I saw was stunning, but really only because it was so big, white, and soft.

When considering the next tier or emerging artists who are origional like shirin neshat or sally Mann I dont know how Catherine Opie is even on the same level. Loretta Lux may have done something clever, but a female photo icon that does not make.

And as much as it pains me to say it. What about annie lebowitz. Sure its not abstract sophistication, but she has reached an audience and has flirted with capturing subjects. AND I fear double standard. We embrace famous male fashion photographers as qausi artists quite readily. And we are now seeing Tina barney move in that direction.

Which makes me wonder. If the list includes the handful of early and mid career somewhat overly complex female artists is it not not elitist to include annie lebowitz mostly because probably only 10 percent of the population even knows who most of the people are on the list we developed, while annie lobowitz has effected hundreds of millions of peoples visual perceptions for the the past 30 years wether they know it or not.

lebowitz is slippery slope to jill greenberg and anne geddes.

Not if you consider the criteria is influence. Keep that in mind. I personally think Shirin Neshat is very creative and talented, however I wonder if she has had as much influence on photgraphy as whole as say a less complex but more prolific photgrapher such as lebowitz. And I challenge anyone to say that there is not an artistic value to her work. SO I cannot discount her as merely a documentarian. She did have a retrospective show recently in Brooklyn that attracted throngs.

OMG, MAO. I just about choked on the big, smelly burrito I am devouring for dinner. Loretta Lux on the top ten list of influential female photographers?! I gotta respond to this one. Let us pull out our art history books. . . The most influential artists are not to be confused with the best sellers.

In my humble opinion, the most obvious ommissions from the list include people like Barbara Kruger, Laurie Simmons, Sherrie Levine, Roni Horn, Louise Lawler, Sarah Charlesworth, Martha Rosler, Hilla Becher, Nancy Burson, Mary Kelly, Adrian Piper, Ana Mendieta, and Carolee Schneeman. These are individuals who have made lasting contributions to the medium - - regardless of whether there is now a waiting list for their prints.

Other important artists whom I would argue definitely eclipse Lux include Sophie Calle, Collier Schorr, Gillian Wearing, Elinor Carucci, Uta Barth, Laura Letinsky, Nikki S. Lee, Lynn Davis, Tacita Dean, Annette Messager, Janine Antoni, Vera Lutter, etc., etc.

Okay, now I can digest. . .

I can't believe that I am commenting on this so late... Um hello! I'm putting myself at the top of the list! Hubris be damned!
Zoe Strauss #1

Fuck YES!

Sehr gute Seite. Ich habe es zu den Favoriten.

hello i have discovered by google that iam in rineke's portraits book does anybody know how i can contact her

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