Laurie Simmons, Day 8 (Lying on Bed), (2010). via Salon 94
New York-based photographer Laurie Simmon’s show opened on February 15th and will continue through Saturday, March 26th. Simmons, who began photographing doll houses in 1976, has since mainly worked with puppets, ventriloquist’s dummies and various other sorts of dolls. Laurie Simmons starred in the indie film “Tiny Furniture” directed by her daughter Lena Dunham, which was recently chosen as winner for best feature film at the South by Southwest Media and Music Conference. For her latest exhibition at Salon 94, entitled “The Love Doll: Days 1 – 30” her subject of choice is none other than one “Love Doll”, a surrogate sex partner created out of silicon and other “life-like” materials.
More text and images after the jump…
Laurie Simmons, Day 1/Day 27 (New in Box), (2010). via Salon 94
In 2009, Simmons ordered the doll fully customized from a high-end retailer in Japan, where they are commonly known as “Dutch Wives”. She proceeded to document the doll’s immersion into the “real world”, from the time of her arrival in a cardboard box to the encounter with another doll Simmons later additionally ordered. Though curiously de-sexualized, the doll remains an object of fascination for both the photographer and viewers alike. She is depicted in various emotional states, ranging from vulnerability (Day 8 – Lying on a Bed) to exuberance (Day 25 – The Jump). The series also reflects a kind of maturing process the doll goes through as she “interacts” with her surroundings. According to the exhibition’s statement, “The first days depict a somewhat formal and shy series of poses with an ever increasing familiarity and comfort level unveiled as time passes”.
Laurie Simmons, Day 25 (The Jump), (2010). via Salon 94
Laurie Simmons, Day 30 (Meeting), (2010). via Salon 94
Simmons’ Tribeca studio also served as the location for another project, the 2010 indie favorite “Tiny Furniture” written and directed by her 24-year-old daughter Lena Dunham. First premiered at MOMA in November, “Tiny Furniture” portrays the coming-of-age story of a recent college graduate trying to establish her place within her home and greater New York. Laurie stars in the film as the main character’s mother (played by Lena Dunham herself), a neurotic artist who’s life’s work consists of photographing different kinds of miniature furniture.
Laurie Simmons: My Daughter the Sex Doll [Artnet]
18 Questions for Artist Laurie Simmons [ArtInfo]
LAURIE SIMMONS: ‘The Love Doll: Days 1-30’ [New York Times]
Asked & Answered | Laurie Simmons [New York Times]
Laurie Simmons [The New Yorker]