Belvedere Torso by Stephane Graff; 27” x 23” framed; hand printed on silver gelatin paper, edition 1/15, 1991 A comprehensive body of work, Graff’s Constriction series began in 1991. Many of the pictures were shot intensively over a two year period (1991-1992), after which the series was revisited in 2013. In Constrictions, we discover nudes bound with ropes. Their bodies, partially concealed, are meticulously wrapped in manners reminiscent of ancient Egyptian mummies. Captured in raking light, their bodies are seemingly fragmented, appearing at times as if they are heavy stone sculptures about to be hoisted by steel cranes. The eroticism or violation of a rope-tied nudes has appealed to many artists in the past. Man Ray unified the themes of the armless female torso with binding by cord his Venus Restaurée of 1936, a precursor to Graff’s geometrically precise modernism. But it would perhaps be too easy to interpret Graff’s nudes as sexual fantasies. Graff’s subject stems from his fascination of the ritual of binding body parts within various indigenous cultures to distinguish their members or tribal groups. One example is head binding in Africa, used to extend the shape of the skull. Another is the coiling of metal rings around the neck, as seen in the Padaung tribe in Asia, as well as the practice of foot binding in China. Graff’s photographs entitled Ropehead and Foot Constriction both clearly elude to such tribal practices. Another source of inspiration for Graff is the escapologist and stunt performer Harry “Handcuff” Houdini, who would frequently volunteer to be tied and chained up on stage before performing his miraculous escape. Graff similarly photographed a contemporary Mongolian contortionist who would pull her body into infinite positions. The theatrical element is hinted at in Graff’s studio set, which often incorporates a painted canvas backdrop to give the impression of a Victorian stage or side show. Indeed, in the series Constrictions, Graff expands the nude to a dramatic theatre in which many discourses can be read. Stephane Graff is an artist working principally photography, painting, sculpture and video. He does not draw a line between these different mediums, but rather skillfully employs each in order to express his most current concepts. Graff is an expert photographic printer, producing the highest quality silver gelatin prints by hand in his darkroom.
- CreatorStephane Graff (Artist)
- Date of manufacture1991
H 27 in. x W 23 in. x D 1 in.
H 68.58 cm x W 58.42 cm x D 2.54 cm
- Seller locationNew York, NY
- Reference numberLU90532046092
About the Seller
1stdibs seller since 2010
Typical response time: 8 hrs
Located in New York, NY
You may also contact the seller by phone
You May Also Like
Versailles Parlor Photograph by Francois Dischi...
Francois Dischinger Versailles parlor archival black and white silver fiber print mounted to dibond and framed in lacquer wood Measures: 20 x 16 inches, 20.75 x 16.75 inches frame...
Paris 911, Photograph by Francois Dischinger
Francois Dischinger, Paris 911 archival black and white silver fiber print mounted to dibond and framed in lacquer wood with museum glass Measures: 20 x 16 inches, 20.75 x 16.75 ...
Juan Adrio Photograph Giclée Print on Photo Paper
Juan Adrio (Pontevedra, 1971). "Punta Udra" Giclée print on epson traditional photo paper. Mounted on dibond and wooden frame. Series of three copies. Copy numbered 2/3. The pho...
George Hurrell Signed LE Framed Photograph of J...
George Hurrell (1904–1992) took this portrait of Joan Crawford at her home in Brentwood in 1932 and printed it circa 1980 as part of his Portfolio III series. He signed the image “10...
Christopher Sharples Photograph, "Skip Diptych"
Christopher Sharples - Circa 2009 Artist Proof # 1 Series of 9 plus 2 AP Archival Pigment print - printed on Hahnemühle photo rag paper. Presented in a painted white box s...
Jan Saudek, "Close Up", #NO, Original Photograph
Jan Saudek, Czech photographer, born 1935 Original silver gelatin print, photograph Title : "Clouse up" # NO Model print Finished , Februari 1885 Signed lower right Meas...
"Solitude" Photograph by Ezra Gozo Mansur
Ezra Gozo Mansur
Black and white photograph, 2003. This edition was limited to a total of ten signed and numbered pieces. We are fortunate to have "1st dibs" on the remaining pieces directl...