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Love Doll - Laurie Simmons, Glenn O’Brien - An Artist Dialogue Series Event

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September 18, 2013

Program Locations:

Stephen A. Schwarzman Building, Margaret Liebman Berger Forum

FREE - Berger Forum doors open at 5:30 p.m.

Artist Laurie Simmons is joined by writer Glenn O’Brien to discuss various subjects including dolls and artifice, sexuality and identity, imagination and physicality, fetishism and the evolution of gender identities, archtypes and taboos, as well as the specific processes of taking photographs and making movies.

Laurie Simmons, The Love Doll / Day 32 (Blue Geisha, Black & White Room), 2011Laurie Simmons, The Love Doll / Day 32 (Blue Geisha, Black & White Room), 2011

In 2009, Simmons opened a new chapter in her work and ordered a custom, high-end “Love Doll” from Japan. Simmons documented her photographic relationship with this human scale “girl,” depicting the lifelike, latex doll in an ongoing series of “actions”—each shown and titled chronologically from the day she received the doll, describing the relationship she developed with her model. The first days of somewhat formal and shy poses give way to an increasing familiarity and comfort level. A second doll arrived one year later. This new character—and the interaction between the two dolls—reveals a new formal and psychological dynamic. In search of a stage for her Love Doll, Simmons turned to her own home, transforming it into an artfully staged, oversized dollhouse. A tale of disquieting adult fantasy, desire and regret, The Love Doll accompanies the complete photographic series with the artist’s diary entries.

Copies of the book are available for purchase and signing at the event after the audience Q&A.

Laurie Simmons, The Love Doll / Day 27/Day 1 (New in Box), 2010Laurie Simmons, The Love Doll / Day 27/Day 1 (New in Box), 2010

Laurie Simmons is an artist who lives and works in New York and Connecticut. Staging photographs and films with dolls, puppets, ventriloquist dummies and dancers as “living objects,” Simmons animates a world immersed in memory, longing, and regret. Her work appears unsettling as characters struggle with identity.  Widely exhibited, Simmons has had solo exhibitions at the Baltimore Museum of Art, the Walker Art Center, and The Gothenburg Museum in Sweden, among others. In 2006 she produced and directed her first film titled The Music of Regret, starring Meryl Streep and the Alvin Ailey 2 Dancers. The film premiered at The Museum of Modern Art, and has been screened at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Whitney Museum of American Art, Centre Pompidou, and the Tate Modern. She is currently working on her second feature length film. This fall, the Arnold and Marie Schwartz Gallery at The Metropolitan Opera will show new work inspired by the Nico Muhly opera, Two Boys. Simmons will have a solo exhibition at Salon 94 in New York in March 2014.

Laurie Simmons, The Love Doll / Day 23 Kitchen, 2010Laurie Simmons, The Love Doll / Day 23 Kitchen, 2010Glenn O’Brien is a writer, editor and creative director. He writes a monthly column for GQ and contributes to many publications including Purple, Harper’s Bazaar, and Ten. His recent book, How to Be a Man (Rizzoli) is in its fifth hardcover printing. He worked as creative director for Barneys, Island Records and Calvin Klein, and has created advertising campaigns for Chanel, Dior, Calvin Klein, and Dolce & Gabbana. He has written extensively on art, with essays and monographs on such artists as Jean-Michel Basquiat, James Nares, Richard Prince, Tom Sachs, Dash Snow, Christopher Wool, and Andy Warhol. He has edited an anthology of hipster literature, The Cool School, which will be published by the Library of America in the fall of 2013.

Initiated and organized by Arezoo Moseni in 2004, Artist Dialogues Series provide an open forum for understanding and appreciation of contemporary art. Artists are paired with critics, curators, gallerists, writers or other artists to converse about art and the potential of exploring new ideas.