Untitled (Three Asian Cheerleaders)
Not on view
Overall: 40 × 72 × 1 1/2in. (101.6 × 182.9 × 3.8 cm)
Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; purchase, with funds from the Contemporary Painting and Sculpture Committee
Rights and reproductions
© 2001 Luis Gispert
Combining the flashy style of hip-hop with the mystical themes of Renaissance religious art and modern science fiction, Luis Gispert’s photographs capture the cultural heterogeneity of our time. In Untitled (Three Asian Cheerleaders), the cheerleaders pose in generic costumes liberally adorned with gold jewelry. A young woman seems to float in midair, as if in a state of spiritual apotheosis, while her hands make gestures that resemble Hindu mantras as well as the gang signs of the Miami ghettos where Gispert lived for many years before moving to New York. The overall composition recalls numerous iconographic precedents; the hovering girl evokes depictions of the Annunciation (the Biblical account of the angel Gabriel visiting the Virgin Mary to reveal that she would become the mother of Jesus), while the girl draped across another at right is reminiscent of the conventional pose used in images of the Pietà (Mary cradling the dead Jesus in her lap after the Crucifixion). Gispert frequently employs the green background seen here—a patented color, Rosco Chromateen Green, which is also used in filming special effects.