Volume 3 Issue 2
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HUANG Bihe. From Monroe to Mishima: Gender and Cultural Identity in Yasumasa Morimura's Performance and Photography[J]. International Comparative Literature, 2020, 3(2): 289-300. doi: 10.19857/j.cnki.ICL.2020325
Citation: HUANG Bihe. From Monroe to Mishima: Gender and Cultural Identity in Yasumasa Morimura's Performance and Photography[J]. International Comparative Literature, 2020, 3(2): 289-300. doi: 10.19857/j.cnki.ICL.2020325

From Monroe to Mishima: Gender and Cultural Identity in Yasumasa Morimura's Performance and Photography

doi: 10.19857/j.cnki.ICL.2020325
  • Received Date: 2020-01-12
  • Rev Recd Date: 2020-04-10
  • Publish Date: 2021-03-09
  • Japanese contemporary artist Yasumasa Morimura is renowned for his parodies of female characters in Western paintings and film stars in Western mainstream movies through performance and photography. In this essay, through an analysis of Morimura's Marilyn Series (1996) and “Seasons of Passion” (2006), the first chapter of his recent project, A Requiem, I will investigate Morimura's performance and photography from a gendered perspective. With a comparison between Monroe's image in the film still of The Seven Year Itch (1955) and Morimura's Self-Portrait (Actress) / White Marilyn and Self-Portrait (Actress) / White Marilyn, this essay will also examine how Morimura challenges the male gaze of the heterosexual male and fixed gender identity with his male body. By contextualizing his works in the US-Japan relations in the postwar period, I will also explore the connections between the two appropriated figures, Marilyn Monroe and Yukio Mishima, and see how Morimura intersects gender identity of the self with the cultural gender of a nation. By making comparisons between the original images of Mishima in Eikoh Hosoe's photo album Ordeal by Roses and Morimura's appropriations in “Seasons of Passion,” this essay will show how Japan's cultural gender identity is addressed in Morimura's appropriation practices.
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