Jada, Sugar Camp Road, Saxton, Pennsylvania
Not on view
Sheet (Sight): 47 1/2 × 59 1/2in. (120.7 × 151.1 cm) Frame: 48 7/8 × 60 13/16 × 1 5/8in. (124.1 × 154.5 × 4.1 cm)
Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; purchase, with funds from Joanne Leonhardt Cassullo in memory of Anne Fisher
Rights and reproductions
Courtesy of Fraenkel Gallery, San Francisco and Greenberg Von Doren Gallery, New York
Jada, Sugar Camp Road, Saxton, Pa. belongs to a series of large-scale color photographs that Katy Grannan took of people who answered an ad that she placed in the local newspaper. Grannan offered a small fee for models who would agree to sit for her camera, and allowed them to choose the manner in which she would photograph them. She photographed the respondents in outdoor settings: perching against a roadside rock, stretching under a tree, squatting in a pond of mud. Most of the models opted to be nude or semi-nude and almost all chose a provocative pose. Reflecting the influence of both portrait photography and landscape painting traditions, Grannan’s interest lies in emphasizing her subjects’ unvarnished humanity. In the style of such portrait photographers as Diane Arbus, Grannan’s images capture a provocative combination of brazenness and vulnerability in her sitters. The subjects’ exhibitionism finds its counterpart in the photographer’s voyeurism, producing in the viewer an unsettling awareness of his or her own position as witness to an intimate encounter.