The Easel

Archives: Madison Reid

5th March 2024

Catherine Opie Goes Into Her Archive to Illustrate Why Harmony Is Fraught

Opie’s images of LA’s gay community are notable because they combine the formalities of portraiture with photographic activism. Besides portraying members of her friendship circle her work includes images of LA city – “because I’ve always thought of the city as a body”.  This is Opie linking the public and the personal: “I’m trying to show all this beauty and all this love but, at the same time, remember that that beauty and that love … hits up hard a lot of the time.”