Jeffrey Silverthorne is an American photographer mainly known for taking pictures of death and nudity. In 1946 he was born in Honolulu, Hawaii, and he began taking pictures around 1967. Jeffrey Silverthorne exhibited in the early 70’s his post-mortem Morgue Pictures at Witkin Gallery and inspired people like Joel-Peter Witkin and later Andres Serrano. In the following years he portrayed transvestites and transexuals. Jeffrey Silverthorne has ever since explored the question of sex and death, as well as the notions of boundary and transgression. Active since the end of the 60’s, he has been accumulating series on extreme subjects: a slaughter house, a morgue, brothels, etc. His works are not out of voyeurism. Rather, Silverthorne seeks a way to further expose himself, to become more vulnerable so as to dive deeper into his own psychology, once stating, "I make images to remember, not the purpose, but my own feelings and reactions." Hence his lack of interest for an objective photography that would translate nothing of the intensity of the experience and, on the contrary, his liking for subjective documentaries and structured images shaped as plastic experiments and stage productions.
Jeffrey Silverthorne (b. 1946 US) was included in the outstanding show “The Chock in 70’s American Photography” at Bibliothèque Nationale (Paris, 2008). He has published "Directions for Leaving", written by Annie Proulx (Copenhagen, 2007) and “Boystown, the Perfume of Desire” with introductions by Anne Biroleau-Lemagny (Bibliothèque Nationale, Paris) and Jon Hendricks (MoMA, New York) (Copenhagen, 2009). Recent shows: Travel Plans, Nooderlicht (The Netherlands 2011), Portraits, Galerie Vu (France 2012) and Portraits and Figures, Galleri Tom Christoffersen (Denmark).
- Written by Lars Schwander
Couple, Detroit Motel, 1992, from the series Detroit Negatives, Detroit and Goth, Gelatin Silver Print, 40 x 50 cm / 30 x 40 cm
Nancy, 1992, From the series Detroit Negatives, Detroit and Goth, Gelatin Silver Print, 40 x 50 cm / 30 x 40 cm
Renee With Christmas Lights, Detroit., from the series Detroit Negatives, Detroit and Goth, Gelatin Silver Print, 40 x 50 cm / 30 x 40 cm
Sarah, 1984, from the series People, Portraits And Nudes, Gelatin Silver Print, 40 x 50 cm / 30 x 40 cm