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In this self-portrait, Collishaw has modelled himself on the beautiful
youth, Narcissus from Greek mythology. Narcissus fell in love with his own reflection in a woodland pool, and
died of sorrow.

 

Collishaw transfers the myth to an unglamorous urban setting, where
the very idea of beauty is brought
into question. The woodland is now
an alleyway, the trees are concrete bollards, and the pool a muddy puddle. He holds the button of the camera shutter-release in his left hand in a gesture which echoes that used in classical painting to conceal genitalia.

 

September 2004