Identiteit in portretten van Marlene Dumas in kunsthistorisch perspectief Een vergelijking van het geschilderde portret door Marlene Dumas met werken van Andy Warhol en Cindy Sherman.

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This thesis shows that Marlene Dumas, Andy Warhol (1928-1987) and Cindy Sherman have similar ways in representing identity in their portraiture. The subject of this thesis is the representation of identity in the portraiture of Marlene Dumas. The theories on semiology of Ferdinand de Saussure (1855-1913), Charles Sanders Peirce ( 1839-1914) and on deconstructivism of Jacques Derrida (1930- 2004) will be used to analyze and compare the representation of identity in the portraiture of Dumas with the portraiture of Andy Warhol and Cindy Sherman. Dumas’ work Dead Marilyn (image 1) will be compared with the representation of identity in Andy Warhol’s Marilyn Diptych. Sad Romy (image 2) will be compared to the representation of identity in Cindy Sherman’s Untitled Film Still # 27. The three artists base their subjects on mass media images. In Dead Marilyn transforms Marlene Dumas a post-mortem photograph of Marilyn Monroe into a painting. Marilyn Diptych is based on an advertisement for the film Niagara (1953). The subject of these two artworks is the same: the death of Marilyn Monroe. Both artist show that identity is not determined by one narrative. Identity is represented by two conflicting images. The image of the mortal Marilyn Monroe and the image of the immortal symbol of American beauty. In this way both artists are consistent with theories of Derrida. Derrida argues that identity is never based on one narrative, but consists of multiple narratives. The tension between the two signifiers: the object and the title of the work, form in Dead Marilyn and Sad Romy an important part of the way identity is constructed. Two different narratives refer to the same subject: Marilyn Monroe and Sad Romy. The tension between the two signifiers doesn’t play a big part of the construction of identity in the work of Andy Warhol and Cindy Sherman.
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