Oral history interview with Catherine Opie, 2012 August 13-27

Opie, Catherine , b. 1961
Active in Los Angeles, Calif.

Size: 7 sound files (5 hr., 17 min.) digital, wav
Transcript: 112 pages.

Format: Originally recorded as 7 digital sound files. Duration is 5 hr., 17 min.

Collection Summary: An interview of Catherine Opie conducted 2012 August 13-27, by Hunter Drohojowska-Philp, for the Archives of American Art, at Opie's home and studio in Los Angeles, Calif.

Opie discusses her childhood in Sandusky, Ohio, moving to California, and introduction to photography; her life in San Francisco and its role in her formulation of sexuality and identity; the importance of identity within her work, especially that of the queer community; the role of architecture and her landscape paintings as metaphor for the queer community and the search for identity; the role of reconceptualization in her work, leading to the ever-changing nature of her works, including comparisons between her portraiture and her landscape photography; her influences and her moniker of the "American photographer" Opie also recalls her partner, painter Julie Burleigh; gallery owners Stuart and Shaun Regen; members of her community and subjects of her portraiture, and others.

Biographical/Historical Note: Catherine Opie (1961- ) is an artist and professor in Los Angeles, Calif. Hunter Drohojowska-Philp (1952- ) is a writer and art historian in Los Angeles, Calif.

This interview is part of the Archives of American Art Oral History Program, started in 1958 to document the history of the visual arts in the United States, primarily through interviews with artists, historians, dealers, critics and administrators.

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