On Sale: September 17, 2007
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Spitting images: truly incredible "celebrity" portraits
Alison Jackson has photographed the Queen of England on
the toilet, George Bush and Tony Blair chatting in the
sauna, Osama Bin Laden playing backgammon, and Monica
Lewinsky lighting Bill Clinton's cigar. Or has she? The
likenesses are uncanny, but of course, her subjects are
look-alikes. Her photos demonstrate that while seeing is
believing, the truth is another story entirely. In her work,
Jackson says, "Likeness becomes real and fantasy touches on
the believable. The viewer is suspended in disbelief. I try
to highlight the psychological relationship between what we
see and what we imagine. This is bound up in our need to
look-our voyeurism-and our need to believe." Indeed, by
showing "celebrities" ostensibly caught unawares, Jackson's
pictures show us what we imagine might go on behind closed
doors. Her work has caused controversy, not least because it
treads in a very gray area between parody and realism by
seeming to break down the carefully fortified private lives
of public figures. For this edition, Jackson has been
commissioned to shoot a broad selection of new portraits of
dead-ringers for Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie, Saddam
Hussein, George Bush and Dick Cheney, Arnold Schwarzenegger,
Donald Trump, J Lo, Eminem, Britney Spears, Jude Law, Nicole
Kidman, Tom Cruise, and many more. Expect the unexpected!
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