Ray Caesar

Madame R

2015, Digital Ultrachrome on Archival Paper
102 x 76 cm / 40 x 30 inch

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Madame R

"My work is often a reflection of my "self" which is an elusive part of who I am fractured into many pieces. The dissociative aspect of my identity was a great coping mechanism in childhood which allowed parts of me to escape into an alternate reality which I am told is of my own construction. I may never know who I truly am and why my fractured personality lives partly in this world and partly in other worlds of my own making. It has been comforting to create visual windows into the paracosm worlds I exist in and sometimes get lost in. These worlds can be pleasant and nice, and sometimes they can be dangerous and violent, but above all, they are a true and honest reflection of who I am."

"The piece Madame R is less of an homage to Jacques-Louis David and more of an affection and admiration for Juliette Récamier and her life. At the age of 15, she was rumored to have been married to a man who was in truth her natural father, and her salon soon became a fashionable gathering place for the great and near-great in politics and the arts. In reading of her life, I am taken by her gentle nature but also her heroic efforts to change and influence the world around her through networking and connecting with others."
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