Medicine Cabinet Portraits
SEPTEMBER–OCTOBER 2003Mixed Greens is pleased to kick off the fall season with photographer Coke Wisdom O’Neal’s first solo show in New York City.
In Medicine Cabinet Portraits, O’Neal presents a series of mesmerizing photographs that transform that most mundane of objects—the bathroom medicine cabinet—into an unsettling landscape. In each life-sized cabinet image, the familiar is rendered foreign, the personal becomes public, and the viewer is made complicit in an ethically questionable exercise: namely, poking through another person’s secret life.
Playing on conflicting strains inherent in contemporary American culture—the obsession with health, disease, and aging; the assumption of privacy in an increasingly voyeuristic world; the simple thrill of snooping—O’Neal is creating a unique form of portraiture. In so doing, the photographs speak not only to the cultural theorist, or the art critic, but to the voyeur in us all.
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