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[NSFW] Gritty, Glittery Nudes Relish the Grotesque Glamour of the Female Form

Joanne Leah’s first solo show, 'Acid Mass,' graces virgin walls at new gallery, NOT FOR THEM.

by Sami Emory
Jun 29 2017, 5:43pm

"The Whole." Beeld door Joanne Leah

Extravagance and abjectness are the unlikely bedfellows that lend photographer Joanne Leah's gritty, glittery nudes their addictive appeal. Her shots are sometimes nasty, mostly naughty, and always irreverent—as she previously told Creators , her series Acid Mass was so named because, "I would take LSD, go to raves, and my mother would make me go to Catholic mass on Sunday morning while I was still hallucinating."

Now, Leah's work has found its own houses of worship: two galleries on opposite sides of the East River. Over in Long Island City, the metallic body paint, bondage paraphernalia, and neon ooze that accent the curves and crevices of Leah's models are gracing the virgin walls of the new NOT FOR THEM gallery in Long Island City. The show, also named Acid Mass, is Leah's first solo show and includes, in addition to her photography, a collection of multimedia pieces, video, and performance.

"Un"

Meanwhile in Manhattan, Leah's contorted portraits help construct a contemporary concept of the female gaze along with the work of the over 20 other emerging female artists featured in our (very) NSFW Museum of Sex show.

"I continually experiment with methods of bodily detachment," Leah explains of her work. "The images themselves become proof of this vulnerable act, between skin and viscera, exhibitionist and voyeur, public and private. I am interested in relationships of contradiction and the beautiful monotony of inhabiting our bodies while simultaneously trying to escape them."

Below, more shots from Joanne Leah's new solo show, Acid Mass:

"Blue Crotchstudy"
"Bless This Mess"
"Rubin's Vase"
"Golden Hour"
"I Couldn't Help It"
"Master of the Obvious"
"Reproduction of the Mouth"
Soul Sole
"This is a Subliminal Messenger"

Acid Mass is on at NOT FOR THEM gallery until July 14th. For more of Joanne Leah's work, visit her website. Find information about our new show at The Museum of Sex, NSFW: THe Female Gaze, here or here.

Related:

We're Having a Very NSFW Art Show at the Museum of Se

20 Female Artists' Perspectives on the Nude

Trip On Church with Photo Series "Acid Mass"