Nan Goldin is an American documentary photographer known for her deeply personal and candid portraiture. Influenced both by the fashion photography of Helmut Newton and Guy Bourdin as well as the revelatory portraits of Diane Arbus and August Sander, Goldin captured herself and her friends, intimates and acquaintances, in a series of indelible images of unflinching, often unflattering candour.
Images of drug use, sexuality and gender, physical abuse, domesticity, boredom, love, portraits tender and fierce,were gathered as a sort of visual diary to form her first major body of work, the Ballad of Sexual Dependency.
Relentlessly focusing on the flesh in close quarters, she has chronicled family and parenthood, the tragedies of AIDS, addiction and recovery, age and loss, the intimacies and alienations of friends and lovers and the restless searching of an artist.
Goldin has written: 'Real memory, which these pictures trigger, is an invocation of the colour, smell, sound, and physical presence, the density and flavour of life.' Goldin currently lives in New York and Paris and has spent considerable time as well Bangkok, Berlin, and Tokyo creating a major body of work that offers a compelling portrait of our times.
Recent solo exhibitions include The Ballad of Sexual Dependency, Tate Modern, London, UK, 2019; Fata Morgana, Château d'Hardelot, Condette, France, 2018 and Weekend Plans, Irish Museum of Modern Art, Dublin.