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TR3 Gallery and National Gallery of Slovenia are pleased to announce the opening of an exhibition of 117 photographs by American artist Robert Mapplethorpe June 1-August 15 2009.

Considered by many to be one of the most important conceptual photographers of his generation, Mapplethorpe, who died twenty years ago, was known for his brilliant eye, and uncompromising point of view. This exhibition begins with his earliest portraits of friends and collaborators in the 1970’s and includes six general groups of images: Self Portraits, Faces, Females, Flesh & Fetish, Flowers and Sculptures as selected by Jill Silverman van Coenegrachts.

As a general overview of the artist’s works, the exhibition will be divided between the two institutions. At the National Gallery of Slovenia will be the photographs of flowers and neoclassical sculptures which Mapplethorpe photographed at the end of his life. His cool and distanced view of both the animate and inanimate is marked in these works. It can be said that somewhere behind the eye of this artist was a quest for ideal forms. He looked for it when photographing people, and found himself very drawn to the line and shadow of various neoclassical sculptures at the end of his life.

In the TR3 Gallery, there will be a series of portraits taken by Mapplethorpe, from early and now Iconic images of his muse Patti Smith, with her necktie hanging down a white shirt, and a jacket over her shoulder (1975) to his own self portrait in a skinny black necktie (1982). There are fantastic faces of artists, friends and compatriots including Louise Bourgeois, Debbie Harry, Francesca von Thyssen, Isabella Rossellini, Lisa Lyon, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Brice Marden, Philip Glass and Robert Wilson, Philip Johnson, Grace Jones and Henry Geldzahler, to name a few.

In conjunction with the opening on Monday 1 June, there will be a panel discussion in the National Gallery of Slovenia at 5:30 pm with independent curator and publisher Peter Weiermair and Jan Babnik, the editor of Fotografija magazine. Also participating in the discussion will be Michael Ward Stout and Eric R. Johnson both from the Robert Mapplethorpe Foundation in New York. The conversation will be moderated by Jill Silverman van Coenegrachts.

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