Two Sides of the Same Coin

Two Sides of the Same Coin

A quarter-century ago this March, Robert Mapplethorpe (1946-1989) died of AIDS. The Sean Kelly gallery commemorates the artist—sometimes celebrated, sometimes notorious, always fascinating—with its show Saints and Sinners. The exhibit pairs 54 photographic images (often taken at different times), in 27 pairs that embody the titular theme:

       

On top is a shot entitled "Bruce Mailman" (1981); at right, "Christopher Holly" (1980). Ah, but which is the saint and which is the sinner? The longer one studies each duo, the more ambiguous the answer grows.

<< Saints and Sinners, Sean Kelly, 475 10th Ave., 212.239.1181, thru Jan. 25

Both images © Robert Mapplethorpe Foundation. Used by permission. Courtesy: Sean Kelly,New York