Lise Sarfati: On Hollywood exhibition at Rose Gallery

Image copyright by Lise Sarfati


Image copyright by Lise Sarfati


Image copyright by Lise Sarfati


ROSEGALLERY  is pleased to announce two upcoming exhibitions of photographs by Lise Sarfati. On February 25, 2012, we will debut the artist’s most current series, On Hollywood. Following this exhibition, we will present an extensive selection of images from the series, SHE. Please join us for an artist’s reception for On Hollywood, Saturday, 25 February 2012 from 6-8 pm and again for the opening of SHE, Saturday, 31 March 2012 from  6-8 pm.

Beginning with her groundbreaking work La Vie Nouvelle/The New Life (2003), French native, Lise Sarfati, has realized six important series of photographs by visiting and working within the United States. Her most recent bodies of work, On Hollywood and SHE, were created in Los Angeles and the Bay Area, respectively. Both series are, like much of Sarfati’s work, research into women’s identities and the construction of feminine types. The artist is highly attuned to the ways in which her female subjects are attempting to construct their identities and how they choose to reveal their characters to those around them. The artist is interested in documenting the intersection between the created, fictional caricature of femininity and what is natural and self-evident.

On Hollywood includes photographs shot on and around Hollywood’s urban stream over the course of 2009 and 2010. In these images, the sharp focus is on the dimension of the landscape in its most ordinary manifestations; empty sidewalks, cluttered storefronts, parking lots and cars. Hollywood is at once an iconic American setting populated by women who believe in bygone realities, as well as a zone of the universal and mundane occupied by women living on the margins. Sarfati describes the women she photographs as “toys of strange and terrible fates they are aware of but which they never seem to achieve any control over”. The underlying theme of these pictures is thus, the way these women choose to project themselves and the tension between their illusions and life’s actualities in modern day Los Angeles.

SHE is a highly personal body of work, focused on the interconnections between four females of a single family as they experience major transitions in their respective lives.   When Sarfati met Sasha and Sloane, the two young sisters of the series, they were coping with a radical cultural and psychological transition, having recently moved to their mother’s Oakland loft from their grandparent’s highly conventional suburban home in Phoenix. As Sarfati began to know the girls, they were reinventing themselves within the framework of a new, unconventional lifestyle with their mother, Christine, and eventually as they moved out into their own apartments while Christine relocated to Los Angeles in pursuit of a singing career. In these highly compelling images of Sloane, Sasha, Christine, and her sister, Gina, Sarfati mines the signs and symbols of female identity, self-expression, and tribalism. She also taps into female relationships, highlighting both the rivalry and emotional interdependence within this particular family’s ongoing drama.

Lise Sarfati’s work is found in the permanent collections at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, CA; Bibliotheque Nationale de France, Paris, France; Los Angeles  County Museum of Art, CA; Brooklyn Museum, NY; Philadelphia Museum of Art, PA; Maison Europeenne de la Photographic, Paris; Bouwfonds Kunststichting, Netherlands; and Fonds National d’Art Contemporain, Paris, among others.

To date, her monographs include, Acta Est, Phaidon (2000); Lise Sarfati, Fundacion Salamanca Cuidad de Cultura (2004); The New Life, Twin Palms Publisher (2005); Lise Sarfati, Austin Texas, Fashion Magazine (2008); SHE, Twin Palms Publisher (2011). She has been the recipient of several distinguished awards, including both the Prix Niepce, Paris, and the Infinity Award from the International Center of Photography, New York.

Sarfati’s photographs will be the subject of a major retrospective at the Bibliotheque Nationale de France in 2014.


For more information please contact Shaun McCracken at


ROSEGALLERY is located at Bergamot Station Arts Center

2525 Michigan Avenue, G5, Santa Monica, CA 90404

 Phone: 310.264.8440 or email to

 Gallery hours are 10.00am to 6.00pm Tuesday through Saturday.


By Jim McKinniss


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