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Constructing Gender

Explore how artists examine the relationship between gender and society.


Untitled

Robert Gober
(American, born 1954)

9196. Photolithograph, composition: 21 x 12 13/16" (53.3 x 32.5 cm); sheet: 22 5/16 x 13 5/8" (56.7 x 34.6 cm)

Gober often recreates everyday objects realistically, but with something slightly askew. Untitled is a print that looks like a page in the International section of the New York Times, featuring a bridal advertisement for Saks Fifth Avenue department store. Some of the articles in this and similar prints are real stories Gober found in newspapers, while he invented others.

The advertisement, too, is a product of manipulation: He photographed himself as a bride, wearing a flowing, white gown and a delicate veil. He once said about the wedding dress: “There’s no comparable costume for a man that symbolizes this moment … we’ve only created this outfit for women.”1 Paired with the headline “Vatican Condones Discrimination Against Homosexuals,” Gober alludes to the fact that, at the time, he—as a gay man—was denied the very thing the advertisement represents.

Gallery label text. Multiplex Directions in Art, 1970 to Now. December 21, 2007 to July 28, 2008. Museum of Modern Art