Robert Mapplethorpe

Waves

1980

Medium
Photograph, gelatin silver print on paper
Dimensions
Support: 341 x 342 mm
frame: 611 x 588 x 38 mm
Acquisition
ARTIST ROOMS Acquired jointly with the National Galleries of Scotland through The d'Offay Donation with assistance from the National Heritage Memorial Fund and the Art Fund 2008
Reference
AR00224

Online caption

Mapplethorpe rarely photographed nature outside in the raw and wild. The sea, with its changeable and unpredictable moods, would seem to be an unlikely subject for him, but the way that he tackles it gives it order and regularity - elements that are central to Mapplethorpe’s aesthetic. He photographs it head on, so that the horizon, the waves and shoreline line up in horizontal bands. Note also how he gives the sky and the shore equal spaces in the composition.

Explore