Joel-Peter Witkin

Joel-Peter Witkin’s scratched, scrawled, and toned photographs undermine the opinions held in Western Civilization about human dignity, individuality and death by showing their very opposites. Gathering images from fine art, literature and history, Witkin pictures the subcutaneous decay of mankind and society. Pygmalion and Galatea, the wife of Cain, Napolean; his subjects are situated in sultry rooms where obsessions, frustrations and perverse sexual drives fester on unrestrained. The intense and authentic way in which he has pictured these events radiates a dangerous fascination with the shady side of man.