Nancy Grossman: Tough Life Diary contextualizes the exhibition of the same name. Nearly 50 years after her first solo exhibition Grossman takes the viewer down the path of challenges and influences navigated in her creation of a powerful body of work that combines exquisite craftsmanship with a long-standing exploration of the nature of violence and power.
The video weaves together archival film footage of the artist in her studio at age 25, an interview from 1994, the artistís own family photos as well as a present-day interview with Grossman at her home in NYC, illustrating complexities in Grossmanís work that are often overlooked in simplified and sensationalistic interpretations of her art.
Judicious use of a split screen showing side-by-side interviews of Grossman from the 90s and today reveals the consistency in her thoughts about her work. Additional use of the split screen to highlight her drawings, collage paintings and the life-size leather covered heads that she is best known for, gives the viewer access to the incredible craftsmanship visible in detailed views while being able to appreciate full views of the work at the same time.
Through Grossmanís words, this video expands the possible readings of her work, confirming its value as a body of work for interdisciplinary exploration on Skidmoreís campus and beyond.