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Judith Henry – Biografía

Judith Henry

Judith Henry (born 1942) is a New York based artist that creates multimedia art works exploring the duality of interior versus public self. Henry often repurposes documentary materials (such as newspapers, telephone books, and film reels) in poignant explorations of identity. She also uses snapshot photography to document the variety and sameness inherent in human life. Her urge to speak through others, splicing dialogue and imagery, probes the gaps between what we say and how we appear, ultimately pointing to the slippery status of identity, evincing her desire to gather the tangible materials of a life.
Judith Henry received a Bachelors of Fine Art from Carnegie-Mellon University.

Pages of Freud (1971). Henry crosshatches lines onto page after page of Freud’s writings, signaling her persistent doubts about the therapeutic potential of language. She continues mining this vein in both Telephone Book Series (1973) and Male and Female (1982, 2009).
In her artist’s book, Who’s Who (1977), she frames newspaper photos of beloved and forgotten faces within the confines of a generic human profile.
In Who I Saw in New York (1970-2000) her street photographs, as a book and as an installation, aggregate thousands of portraits in an attempt to tease out patterns in human experience.
In “Overhead”, a project started in the 1970s that has been ongoing for more than thirty years, Henry combines photographs she takes on the street with fragments of conversation she overhears in public places. She has created six artist’s books combining her street photography with overheard text. Henry has exhibited thousands of quotes and photographs in installations at Bergdorf Goodman (Overheard in New York) and at Neiman Marcus (Overheard in Los Angeles).
True Stories Videos (2008-2011) is a disconcerting mix of biography and fiction, in which anonymous storytellers recall their youth over dense collages of childhood photos, home videos and stock footage.
Rebirth (2012) is a collage series made by layering fragments of celebrity faces onto obituary photos. These hybrid portraits obscure their subjects and speak to collective experiences of uncertainty and disappearance.
Henry designed Crumpled Paper Stationary as part of Wooster Enterprises (1976-79), a collaborative, conceptual business she began with artist Jaime Davidovich. Using their own original designs and additional prototypes by George Maciunas, Davidovich and Henry sold small paper products—greeting cards, writing pads, confetti, and other paper goods—to large and small stores throughout the United States. Their intent was to bring conceptual art into a truly commercial arena. After Wooster Enterprises failed, The Museum of Modern Art continued to produce Henry’s crumpled paper stationary. For years, it was one of the Museum store’s best selling items.