Lace Installation

Posing 1

Posing 2

Posing I - II - III - IV 1985
12 gelatin silver prints on silver and gold metallic paper
7 prints 101.5 x 101.5 cm; 5 prints 101.5 x 132.0 cm
Canadian Museum of Contemporary Photography, Ottawa

The work focuses on the representation of innocence at a time of global conflict. The contrast between the way America saw itself and the political events of the day are underscored by the gestural expressions of both male and female sitters. Other thematic considerations in the work address cultural issues such as the complex signifying aspect of the photograph - the layering of meanings imbedded in the conventions of the pose, specifically gestural coding as an indicator of gender typing and race relations.
  - George Legrady, artist's statement, 1986

Posing series is made up of snapshots taken from two family photo albums dating from the 1960s. One shows a G.I. serving in Vietnam, while the other presents two sisters in a suburban environment. On the basis of these elements, both rich in connotation, Legrady weaves a narrative, switching images in a filmic manner. A parallel montage draws the scenes out of their original context in the family albums and transforms the people in them into characters. By making large blow-ups of the snapshots, Legrady inscribes them definitively within the public domain. Personal memories become historical figures. Two worlds confront each other: the human face of war, represented in a series of conventional poses mimicking heroism and candid male camaraderie; and the world of two supremely gentle and submissive sisters, embodied in poses reproducing female stereotypes from the period. The triptych arrangement and montage format keep switching the two worlds, magnifying the contrasts between them. The passages correspond to a visual rhythm that alternates between the silver and golden tones of the large gelatin silver prints.


Posing 3 Posing 4 Posing 5 Posing 6