SAIC Visiting Artists Program: Sophie Calle
Since the late 1970s, Sophie Calle has made work that investigates provocative and often controversial methods for confronting her emotional and psychological life. She is well known for her sleuth-like explorations of human relationships, which have led her to follow a stranger in the streets of Venice and document his every move, or to find work as a hotel chambermaid in order to photograph the belongings of the hotel's guests. Calle's renowned 2007 exhibition Take Care of Yourself, curated by Daniel Buren for the French Pavilion at the 2007 Venice Biennale, invited women to interpret an email Calle had received from a boyfriend abruptly severing their relationship. The artist orchestrated these interpretations into what Louise Neri described as "a tour de force of feminine responses...in a wild range of media" filling the pavilion. Since then, the exhibition has traveled to 20 venues worldwide. Calle's ever-changing project Rachel, Monique, which also premiered in Venice in 2007, was later expanded for exhibitions at the Palais de Tokyo (2010), Festival d'Avignon (2012), Church of the Heavenly Rest in New York (2013), and the Castello di Rivoli (2014). Inspired by the loss of her mother, Rachel, Monique weaves together photographic documentation, narrative texts, found imagery, and personal iconography. Calle's work has been shown in international venues, including the Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston; Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris; Musée d'Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris; Whitechapel Art Gallery, London; Museum Boymans van Beuningen, Rotterdam; Tel Aviv Museum of Art; Louisiana Museum of Modern Art, Humlebæk; and the Hara Museum of Contemporary Art, Tokyo. Calle was the recipient of the 2010 Hasselblad Award in Photography.