Francesca Woodman

Untitled (1975-1980)

About this artwork

Woodman has carefully balanced a door at an unusual angle across the room, and hidden herself underneath creating an unsettling sense of claustrophobia. This image is from a series of photographs using doors as props, made while a student in New York. Alone and naked, she seems vulnerable, as she undertakes a voyage of personal self-exploration. The unusually placed items and desolate setting in this photograph create a mystical, transcendental quality in the tradition of Surrealism. The precariously placed, heavy object bears an uncanny resemblance to Richard Serra’s sculpture 'Strike (for Roberta and Rudy)' (1969-71).

  • title: Untitled
  • accession number: AR00357
  • artist: Francesca WoodmanAmerican (1958 - 1981)
  • gallery: In Storage
  • object type: Photograph
  • medium: Gelatine silver print
  • date created: 1975-1980
  • measurements: 14.00 x 14.00 cm (paper 25.20 x 20.20 cm) (framed: 45.80 x 40.20 x 2.00 cm)
  • credit line: ARTIST ROOMS National Galleries of Scotland and Tate. Acquired jointly through The d'Offay Donation with assistance from the National Heritage Memorial Fund and the Art Fund 2008
  • copyright: © Courtesy of George and Betty Woodman
  • photographer: Antonia Reeve
This artwork is part of Artist Rooms

Francesca Woodman

Francesca Woodman

Francesca Woodman’s photographs explore issues of gender and the self, looking at the representation of the body, and more specifically at how her own body relates to the world and her surroundings. Born in Denver, Colorado, Woodman studied at Rhode Island School of Design from 1975 to 1978, spending the final year of her studies on an exchange programme in Rome. She had previously lived in Italy with her artist parents during her youth, and later lived in New York. Woodman was interested in Surrealism and Symbolism, particularly the work of Max Klinger. She began to take photographs from around the age of thirteen or fourteen until her suicide at the age of twenty-two. Despite her short career, she produced a significant and influential body of work.