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Sally Mann in "Place"

The documentary shifts to Lexington, Virginia where Sally Mann is working in her studio on a new series of “dog bone” photographs. “What I like about these dog bones is their ambiguity. I mean, I love that aspect of photography, the mendacity of photography. It’s got to have some kind of peculiarity in it or it’s not interesting to me.”

The work-ethic of Sally Mann, whose intricate photographic techniques record the historical scars and romanticism of the South, is as she takes photos both in her studio and outdoors. The farm where Mann lives and works becomes a meaningful backdrop as her inspired process of capturing it on film is revealed.

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Sally Mann

Sally Mann’s early series of photographs of her three children and husband resulted in a series called Immediate Family. In her recent series of landscapes of Alabama, Mississippi, Virginia, and Georgia, Mann has stated that she “wanted to go right into the heart of the deep, dark South.” Shot with damaged lenses and a camera that requires the artist to use her hand as a shutter, these photographs are marked by the scratches, light leaks, and shifts in focus that were part of the photographic process as it developed during the nineteenth century.

Artist Sally Mann discusses her series of dog bone prints and their place within the history of photography.

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