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Stern is part of a series of works by Dumas in which figures lie supine, either asleep or dead, with their eyes closed and mouth open in a pose that recalls depictions of sexual consummation. This work is based on a photograph, printed in the German magazine Stern, of the terrorist Ulrike Meinhof who was found dead in her prison cell in May 1976. She appeared to have committed suicide, although she may have been murdered. Dumas has stated that she borrowed the source from the artist Gerhard Richter, who also made a painting based on the same photograph.

March 2008