Two days after her longtime representative Metro Pictures announced plans to close toward the end of 2021, photographer Cindy Sherman, the highest-profile artist in that esteemed New York gallery’s stable, has signed with Hauser & Wirth, which has 10 outposts and a bookstore spread across three continents. Sprüth Magers, which has spaces in Berlin, London, and Los Angeles, had also formerly represented the artist alongside Metro Pictures.
Sherman, who has been represented by Metro Pictures for 40 years, is known for her game-changing photographs featuring herself in various guises. Her “Untitled Film Stills” series from 1977–80 was composed of black-and-whites images resembling shots from nonexistent Hollywood movies, each with Sherman performing as a filmic type for her camera.
Works such as these qualified her as a member of the Pictures Generation, which focused on the ceaseless flow of images in the world today. She has also been considered a key feminist artist for the ways her pictures have appeared to appropriate the male gaze. Her work has also delved into more disturbing areas, with one series devoted to clowns and another featuring dolls whose mismatched parts are arranged in forms recalling sex positions.
In recent years, Sherman has explored new terrain in her photographs, mulling subjects such as aging and art-historical tropes even relying on Photoshop in some cases. Her most recent exhibition at Metro Pictures, which opened this past September, included new photographs that held self-portraits within self-portraits.
Sherman’s work has been widely exhibited. In 2012, she was the subject of a retrospective at the Museum of Modern Art in New York. And in 2020, her art was the subject of a major survey at the Fondation Louis Vuitton in Paris.
Established in the early 1990s in Switzerland by Iwan and Manuela Wirth, Hauser & Wirth is one of a handful of megagalleries that have aggressively expanded over the past 15 years. The gallery currently operates spaces in New York, London, Los Angeles, Hong Kong, Somerset, and the island of Menorca. Hauser & Wirth has added numerous artists to its program over the past decade; its roster now numbers 55 artists and 36 estates.
Marc Payot, president of Hauser & Wirth, said in a statement, “Cindy is already established in the history of modern and contemporary American art, thanks in no small measure to the extraordinary work of Janelle Reiring and Helene Winer of Metro Pictures, her gallery since the early 1980s. We are excited to build upon their achievements and to introduce the artist’s work to ever-broader audiences and new generations worldwide.”