The ICP Museum’s public space includes a poster wall featuring a rotating installation of artists’ works.
Natasha Caruana: Married Man
November 22–December 4, 2016
Natasha Caruana’s series Married Man (2008–09) documents the dates Caruana went on with married men over the course of one year. She arranged the encounters exclusively through websites designed for men seeking extramarital relationships, sometimes seeing several men in a day and eventually going on over 80 dates. Caruana documented the meetings with a disposable camera and a voice recorder (the latter hidden in a small, red purse that can be seen in some of the photographs) but never reveals the face or identity of any of the men. The clandestine nature of both the meetings and Caruana’s documentation of them puts the viewers in the position of voyeur and detective, implicated in the various breaches of trust unfolding in the pictures and seduced into searching for visual clues that might reveal something about the men and their motivations.
Caruana began the project looking for closure and catharsis; she wanted to understand why people are unfaithful to their partners and gain insight into the dynamics of a frustrated marriage. She was inspired too by the ways in which technology is reshaping our personal relationships. Over time Married Man became an extended, iterative performance, as Caruana became more accustomed to her assumed role as the “other woman” and more assured in her position as artist. In the end she found that the behavior of the men was overwhelmingly predictable: they wanted to talk to somebody about their lives, almost always focusing on
their wives and children. The notion of the illicit, thrilling affair quickly revealed itself to be a fantasy. The reality Caruana encountered was a much more mundane and universal struggle with feelings of loneliness, frustration, and longing.
Natasha Caruana (b. 1983) earned her MA in Photography from the Royal College of Art, London and is a Senior Lecturer of Photography at the University for the Creative Arts in Farnham, in the United Kingdom. In 2014 she was awarded the BMW Residency at the Musée Nicéphore Niépce, which culminated in solo presentations at Les Rencontres d’Arles and Paris Photo and the monograph Coup de Foudre (Love at First Sight). Caruana’s work is held in the collections of the Musée Nicéphore Niépce, the British Library, the Laguna Art Museum, and the Kinsey Institute. She lives and works in London.