Nan Goldin Recounts Beauty, Pain and Addiction With a New Exhibition at Fraenkel Gallery
A tender, intimate and quiet showcase exploring life lived through the lens of addiction.
Fraenkel Gallery welcomes its fifth exhibition by American photographer and activist Nan Goldin since 1994. At the heart of the show is a slideshow entitled “Memory Lost,” which explores the darkness of addiction through images and recordings from the artist’s extensive archive. Described as the exhibition’s centerpiece and shown for the first time on the West Coast, the 24-minute film depicts emotive scenes from Goldin’s life and closest friends that embody the pain and sensibility of a partially remembered life lived through the lens of addiction.
Mysterious depictions of skies, beaches, animals and crowds, often blurred or overexposed, are livened through a score commissioned from the English composer and musician Mica Levi, as well as music by CJ Calderwood and Soundwalk Collective, interwoven with Goldin’s voice, answering machine tapes from the 1980s and contemporary interviews.
Goldin’s ability to create dreamlike memories of the ordinary does not end here, as the exhibition also showcases her most recent works made at home during the lockdown in 2020-21. The series portrays writer Thora Siemsen, who moved into Goldin’s apartment early in the pandemic. The tender, intimate and quiet photographs exhibit the artist’s striking understanding of Caravaggio’s chiaroscuro and mark her “rare return to portraiture.”
Nan Goldin’s exhibition is on view at Fraenkel Gallery until April 29. For more information on the showcase, visit the San Francisco-based gallery’s website.
In other art and design news, Oh de Laval’s “Take Your Pleasure Seriously” arrives at Galerie Marguo.
49 Geary Street, 4th Floor
San Francisco, CA 94108