Nan Goldin (American, born 1953)
Silver dye bleach print; 20 x 24 in. (50.8 x 60.96 cm)
Purchase, The Horace W. Goldsmith Foundation Gift through Joyce and Robert Menschel, 2001 (2001.336.1)
© Nan Goldin
Following in the tradition of Robert Frank and Helen Levitt, Goldin is her generation's greatest practitioner of the "snapshot aesthetic" in photographythe intimate, diaristic mode that yields images that, in the right hands, are both spontaneous and carefully seen, tossed off and irreducibly right. In this early work, the artist has captured her friend as a Chatterton of the Lower East Side, lying across the back of a blue convertible with shirt open, eyes closed, and an empty can of Schaeffer beer by his side instead of arsenica contemporary vision of glamorous surrender for our own time.