Belfast Exposed

Exhibitions

2nd Nov - 22nd Dec

Jerwood / Photoworks Awards (continued)

The 'Jerwood/Photoworks Award' exhibition continues into Gallery 2, where you can see the work by Sam Laughlin. On display in...

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2nd Nov - 22nd Dec

Jerwood / Photoworks Awards

Belfast Exposed is delighted to present the second Jerwood / Photoworks Awards exhibition. Following our involvement as a tou...

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Community

10th May - 10th Aug

In Full Bloom Exhibition – Experiences

The showcase of work in the Arts Care In Full Bloom Exhibitions - Experiences, exhibiting in Belfast Exposed’s Studio Galle...

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1st Apr - 24th Apr

Living in the Moment

Living in the moment is a collaboration between Belfast Exposed and a group of tenants from Mullan Mews and Sydenham Court, t...

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Undergarments and Armor

Gallery 1

13th Oct 2006 to 1st Dec 2006

About The Exhibition

With the support of a Guggenheim Fellowship, I travelled to archives and museums in the U.S. and England photographing undergarments, armor, and the museum forms that populate the storerooms--objects like breastplates, helmets, corsets, bustles, mannequins and dress forms. The earliest objects date from the 14th century while no object is dated past 1900, ruling out the possibility of a living owner. I see these garments and suits of armor as sculptures of the body that, like a carapace, outlast their wearers. These personal effects adorned, constricted and protected the body all at once. Now they are archived as artistic and cultural artefacts, shells of the bodies that once inhabited them. The project extends my long-standing interest in sculpture and the body, presence and absence.

While visual and conceptual dichotomies are clearly present in the relationship between the undergarments and armor (male/female, hard/soft, outside/inside, armed/disarmed), no one simple reading is possible. A bustle is an industrial contraption, while a breastplate is delicately adorned. In the 14th century the term corset was used to refer to a breastplate as worn by a soldier. Though one might expect the feminine undergarments to be alluring, they often appear clinical, even dingy, divorced from the body's lingering presence. On the other hand the armor often conveys an aggressive sexuality, both gorgeous and cruel. Yet in both cases the garments are transformative. The undergarments enhancing and constricting the body to support the fashion of the outer dress; the armour shielding the body's mortal flesh, while concurrently turning its wearer into a terrifying war machine - Tanya Marcuse

The Artists

Tanya Marcuse

Artist Biography

Tanya Marcuse is a photographer whose work has investigated the body and the archive in a series of projects. Her book of photographs, Undergarments and Armor (Nazraeli Press, 2005) was supported by a 2002-3 Guggenheim Fellowship, and a 2003 Anson Kittredge Grant; the project won a 2005 JGS Book Project Award, She is the recipient of a Thomas J. Watson Fellowship, a National Foundation for the Advancement in the Arts Award, and the George Sakier Memorial Prize for Excellence in Photography from Yale University School of Art, where she earned her M.F. A. Her photographs are in the collections of the Corcoran Museum of Art, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Yale Art Gallery, and The Library of Congress. Ms. Marcuse teaches Photography and Photography History and Theory at Simon's Rock of Bard College. She is working on a theoretical based photography project, "Wax Bodies," photographs of 18th century Italian wax anatomical models.

Visit Tanya Marcuse's website here