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Stranger (9)

A light-skinned woman in a white T-shirt and black pants looks at the camera from a bedroom, her arms crossed. We see her window frame, a dotted curtain, and plants.

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  • A light-skinned woman in a white T-shirt and black pants looks at the camera from a bedroom, her arms crossed. We see her window frame, a dotted curtain, and plants.

Date:

1999

Artist:

Shizuka Yokomizo
Japanese, born 1966

About this artwork

Shizuka Yokomizo has explored photography’s complicated relationship to voyeurism most innovatively in her series Dear Stranger (1998–2000). Yokomizo selected potential portrait subjects based on their residences—ground-floor apartments in Berlin, New York, London, and Tokyo—and then mailed anonymous letters asking the inhabitants whether they might stand in front of their apartment windows at a set time in the evening so that she could photograph them. The recipients of her letters were instructed to turn on all their lights, wear their typical clothes, and remain still; or, if they were unwilling to take part, to lower their blinds or draw their curtains. In this way, all those addressed knew that their apartments were being watched, and that they were interacting with a stalker of sorts. The appointed time always came in the evening, so that the subjects could discern the photographer only as a silhouette. Yokomizo promised to refrain from any exchange with her addressees: No knock on the door. No conversation. Only two complete strangers fully complicit in the act of photography.

Status

Currently Off View

Department

Photography and Media

Artist

Shizuka Yokomizo

Title

Stranger (9)

Place

Japan (Artist's nationality:)

Date  Dates are not always precisely known, but the Art Institute strives to present this information as consistently and legibly as possible. Dates may be represented as a range that spans decades, centuries, dynasties, or periods and may include qualifiers such as c. (circa) or BCE.

Made 1999

Medium

Chromogenic print

Edition

2 of 5

Dimensions

Image: 75.5 × 79.4 cm (29 3/4 × 31 5/16 in.); Paper: 103.5 × 123.6 cm (40 3/4 × 48 11/16 in.); Frame: 107.2 × 127.6 × 4.2 cm (42 1/4 × 50 1/4 × 1 11/16 in.)

Credit Line

Gift of Igor M. DaCosta

Reference Number

2012.835

Extended information about this artwork

Object information is a work in progress and may be updated as new research findings emerge. To help improve this record, please email . Information about image downloads and licensing is available here.

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