Fiona Banner: Performance Nude

ISBN 13: 9781904212461

Fiona Banner: Performance Nude

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9781904212461: Fiona Banner: Performance Nude

From 'The Birth of Venus' to art school classrooms across the globe, artists have, over time, employed life models in an attempt to capture the essence of the female nude. One such artist is Fiona Banner. As this book Performance Nude illustrates, Banner uses paint and line to portray her models; however, she renders them not in figurative gestures, but in words. Straying further from traditional methods, she specifically uses 'real' women rather than practiced life models as her subject, choosing to capture the strain and tension created in the room by the presence of a novice. Whatever discomfort is revealed in the relationship is tested further by introducing an audience to the room and filming the scene for up to an hour. The effect is at timespoetic, at others searching and critical. By portraying her nudes in this way, Banner questions the difference between looking and perceiving; the separation between experiencing something, and the language we use to describe it.

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About the Author:

Fiona Banner (b. 1966) is a British artist who was shortlisted for the Turner Prize in 2002, and is seen as one of the Young British Artists (YBAs). She was born in Merseyside and now lives in London. She completed her MA at Goldsmiths College in 1993. The next year she held her first solo show at City Racing. Following her shows at the Neuer Aachener Kunstverein, Aachen, and Dundee Contemporary Arts, she was nominated for the Turner Prize. More recent shows include The Bastard Word, at The Power Plant, Toronto, and Live/Work, at MOMA, New York.

Fiona Banner's medium is words. The possibilities and limitations of language as a tool of communication lie at the heart of her practice. Building huge pictorial texts, she takes language apart, stripping it bare in order to make and unmake meaning.

 Much of her work is influenced by feature films; these works include Point Break (1991), The Desert (1994) and particularly The Nam (1997), a 1,000-page book which describes the plots of six Vietnam films in their entirety: Apocalypse Now, Born On The Fourth of July, The Deer Hunter, Full Metal Jacket, Hamburger Hill and Platoon.

The wall of her show in the Turner Prize at Tate Britain was dominated by a large text piece, Arsewoman in Wonderland. This caused a certain commotion in the media, as it was a vivid description of a pornographic film. The Guardian wittily reversed the widespread question and asked, "It's art. But is it porn?" calling in "Britain's biggest porn star", Ben Dover, to comment.[1]

In 1997 Banner formed The Vanity Press, through which she publishes her own works, such as "the Nam", "The Bastard Word" and "All The World's Fighter Planes".

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