Mickalene Thomas - Photographs New York Wednesday, April 6, 2022 | Phillips

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  • "By portraying real women with their own unique history, beauty and background, I’m working to diversify the representations of black women in art."
    —Mickalene Thomas
    Mickalene Thomas’ dynamic practice includes photography, painting, collage, and illustration; a layered process mimicking the multifaceted dimension of her subjects. Addressing themes such as race, gender and sexuality, Thomas’ work explores the extent to which identity is constructed by representations in art history and pop culture. This unique photomontage is comprised of seven panels each with stacked frames and fabric built around the seven striking female portraits. With clear references to Edouard Manet’s Olympia and Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres’ La Grande Odalisque, this installation highlights Thomas’ innovative, expressive, and rich visual lexicon. 

    • Provenance

      Lehmann Maupin Gallery, New York
      Phillips, New York, 4 October 2018, lot 276

    • Artist Biography

      Mickalene Thomas

      American • 1971

      Glamour and feminism need not be foes, as evinced by the wonderful work of Mickalene Thomas. The artist examines these qualities through the lens of the African-American female experience. Whether with her rhinestone-inflected, '70s-glam-inspired portraits of black beauty and power or her photographic installations of her mother's living room, Thomas personalizes while aestheticizing a visual conversation about race. By tackling classical art historical themes, she writes African-American aesthetics into traditional conventions.

      Blockbuster retrospectives at the Brooklyn Museum and ICA Boston thrust Thomas into contemporary art's mainstage. Her platform extends her creative pursuits into fashion, interiors and DJ'ing. Thomas' market has also grown at a steady pace with auction prices increasing each year.

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Photomontage 5

Unique photographic installation comprised of seven panels.
Overall 36 x 48 x 3.5 in. (91.4 x 121.9 x 8.9 cm)
Each panel signed, titled and dated in ink on the reverse.

Full Cataloguing

$40,000 - 60,000 

Sold for $44,100

Contact Specialist

Sarah Krueger
Head of Department, Photographs

Vanessa Hallett
Worldwide Head of Photographs and Chairwoman, Americas


New York Auction 6 April 2022