n°113/ Robert Mapplethorpe as a Sculptor

March 2014


by Nathalie Azoulai

The first retrospective on Robert Mapplethorpe's work just started in Paris Grand Palais and will go through July,13. More than 200 photographs cover a 29-year career that ended up in 1989. Subversion and provocativeness were then his big thing since he photographed penises and flowers the same way through wild and venous close-ups, alongside with black and white portraits. Over the erotic power that made Mapplethorpe’s work famous, the exhibition presents the classic dimension of the artist’s work and his search for aesthetic perfection.“If I had been born one hundred or two hundred years ago, I might have been a sculptor, but photography is a very quick way to see, to make a sculpture. Lisa Lyon -one of his major muses-  reminded me of Michelangelo’s subjects, because he did muscular women”, said Mapplethorpe in 1987. Obviously the reason why another exhibit will start in Musée Rodin on April, 7, comparing the photographer's work with French sculptor's, Auguste Rodin.


 Robert Mapplethorpe