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Cindy Sherman’s groundbreaking series, Untitled Film Stills, is to go on public display for the first time in the UK in this major new retrospective.

The exhibition will explore the development of Sherman’s work from the mid-1970s to the present day, featuring around 180 works from international public and private collections, as well as new work never before displayed in a public gallery.

Widely regarded as one of the world’s leading contemporary artists, Sherman (b1954) first gained widespread critical recognition for Untitled Film Stills (1977-80), the series that she commenced shortly after moving to New York in 1977. Comprising 70 images, the work was the artist’s first major artistic statement and defined her approach. The exhibition will focus on the artist’s manipulation of her own appearance and her deployment of material derived from a range of cultural sources in order to create imaginary portraits that explore the tension between façade and identity.

Other highlights include all five of Sherman’s Cover Girl series, completed when she was a student in 1976, displayed together for the first time, and key works will be shown from the artist’s most important series including Rear Screen Projections, Centrefolds, History Portraits, Fairy Tales, Sex Pictures, Masks, Headshots, Clowns and Society Portraits.

Sherman is famous for her use of make-up, costumes, props and prosthetics to create complex and ambiguous photographic images. A range of source material from the artist’s studio will be shown in order to provide unprecedented insights into her working processes.

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