Saturday, 16 April 2011

Annie Leibovitz: A Photographer's Life 1990 - 2005 (16th April 2011)

Most weekends have been spent exploring the city and today, Jono and I made a trip to the Museum of Contemporary Art (MCA) located at The Rocks to see the exhibition Annie Leibovitz: A Photographer's Life 1990 - 2005 that was running till the 26th of April. It was our first visit to the MCA and we were very fortunate to be able to see this exhibition for free (normally $15 for adults) - with Jono's job comes many perks and one of them is free entry to MCA. All Jono has to do is to book out the number of passes he requires for the day with the Google office receptionist and flash the pass on entry to museum. How cool is that? I'm very lucky to have a partner that works for Google because I get to enjoy some of the perks too :)

Annie Leibovitz is a famous American photographer and this exhibition showcases 192 of her works over a period of more than 15 years - these works included portraits of public figures such as politicians, actors, filmmakers and musicians, as well as several landscape works and other unpublished personal photographs. Among those public figures she had photographed included well-known celebrities such as Demi Moore (heavily pregnant and nude), Nicole Kidman, Johnny Depp and Kate Moss (Moss was nude while Depp was fully clothed lying in between Moss' legs covering her abdomen), Cindy Crawford (holding a python wrapped around her semi-nude body), John Lennon and Yoko Ono (this photo was shot the day of Lennon's death), and The Trumps (Donald Trump sitting in his expensive car while wife Melania is pregnant, wearing a bikini and high heels standing on the stairs leading into their private jet). These photos were just amazing, capturing the essence of her subjects with artistic flair yet candid, filled with expression and life.

There was a section of the exhibition that was dedicated to her personal photographs, scenes from her life, her parents and extended family, as well as the birth and childhood of her 3 children. We were surprised to learn that Annie gave birth to her eldest daughter, Sarah, at age 51, and her twins born to a surrogate mother 4 years later. Frankly I find having kids in your fifties much too late but I guess if you're loaded, you can still provide them with a good life, even if you can't keep up with them physically. Another interesting thing we discovered was that Annie had a lover, novelist Susan Sontag, whom she had never lived with in the same residence yet both lived in an apartment within view of each other's. The exhibition featured photos of their lives together, including several on Sontag's deathbed (she died at 71 from complications from myelodysplastic syndrome).

All in all a highly recommend exhibition for those of you who are interested in photography or celebrities - only 10 more days before it's over so hurry over or you might just miss this touring exhibition!


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