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Photograph - United States of America; Insecurity
  • United States of America
    Stewart, Christopher, born 1966
  • Enlarge image

United States of America; Insecurity

  • Object:

    Photograph

  • Place of origin:

    USA (photographed)

  • Date:

    2002 (photographed)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Stewart, Christopher, born 1966 (photographer)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    C-type print

  • Credit Line:

    Purchased through the Cecil Beaton Fund

  • Museum number:

    E.3564-2004

  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

Having spent years developing contacts in the secretive global security industry, the British photographer Christopher Stewart travelled the world to document its agents at work. The resulting images are psychologically charged, with an intriguingly elusive narrative. They recall scenes from thrillers or gangster films, yet hint at contemporary issues of instability, security and surveillance. As a critic recently commented, they make us ‘hover, undecided, between the “observational” mode of documentary and the “point of view” shot of drama’.

This image shows a man looking out of a window through Venetian blinds. The muted table lamp and telephone suggest that the setting is a hotel room but there is no clue as to where in the world this might be. The viewer is kept in the dark as to what lies beyond the window, seeing only small shafts of light through the blinds. Our alienation from the scene is compounded further as we glimpse only the side of the agent’s face.

Physical description

Colour photograph of a man peeping through closed venetian blinds on a window.

Place of Origin

USA (photographed)

Date

2002 (photographed)

Artist/maker

Stewart, Christopher, born 1966 (photographer)

Materials and Techniques

C-type print

Dimensions

Height: 122 cm frame, Width: 154.4 cm frame, Height: 102 cm image, Width: 133 cm image

Descriptive line

'Untitled, United States of America', 2002 from the series 'Insecurity' by Christopher Stewart (born London 1966)

Exhibition History

Something that I'll Never Really See: Contemporary Photography from the V&A (Cartwright Hall, Bradford 24/01/2009-19/03/2009)
Something that I'll Never Really See: Contemporary Photography from the V&A (Herbert Art Gallery 16/09/2008-11/01/2009)
Something that I'll Never Really See: Contemporary Photography from the V&A (Hatton Gallery, Newcastle 27/06/2008-21/08/2008)
Something that I'll Never Really See: Contemporary Photography from the V&A (Nottingham Castle Museum and Art Gallery 03/05/2008-15/06/2008)
Something that I'll Never Really See: Contemporary Photography from the V&A (artsdepot, Finchley, London 24/01/2008-31/03/2008)
Something that I'll Never Really See: Contemporary Photography from the V&A (Sainsbury Centre, Norwich 01/05/2007-24/06/2007)

Labels and date

Having spent years developing contacts in the secretive global security industry, the British photographer Christopher Stewart travelled the world to document its agents at work. The resulting images are psychologically charged, with an intriguingly elusive narrative. They recall scenes from thrillers or gangster films, yet hint at contemporary issues of instability, security and surveillance. As a critic recently commented, they make us ‘hover, undecided, between the “observational” mode of documentary and the “point of view” shot of drama’. [20/02/2006]

Subjects depicted

Windows

Categories

Photographs

Collection code

PDP

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