June 2018 Spotlight Artist: SPENCER TUNICK

Spencer Tunick, Desert Spirits 1, 2013, Pigment print, 48” x 60”, ed. of 6

Spencer Tunick is an American photographer best known for organizing large-scale nude shoots. His photographs seek to counter purely erotic associations of the naked body by abstracting them as a series of forms. Tunick documents live nudes in natural and urban landscapes, such as Times Square, the Dead Sea, the Sydney Opera House, and the beaches of Maui. Sometimes, after gathering his subjects together, Tunick organizes them by gender, hair length, age or other characteristics. Since 1994, he has photographed over 75 human installations around the world. In 2007, Tunick organized a shoot of more than 18,000 participants, who laid down nude in loosely organized rows, covering Mexico City’s Zocalo Square. His photographs constitute impromptu social events that, despite the awkwardness of public nudity, encourage positive attitudes toward the naked body. Tunick’s philosophy is that “individuals en masse, without their clothing, grouped together, metamorphose into a new shape. The bodies extend into and upon the landscape like a substance.” In recent years, the artist has turned to painting to highlight the ways the body is politicized. Tunick’s current exhibition, Nudes, curated by Gerald Matt, is on view in Palermo, Italy through June 2nd. The project is supported by the Regional Council for Cultural Heritage of Palermo and by the GAM in Turin.