Lorraine O'Grady

 

Miscegenated Family Album

 1980/1994
Miscegenated Family Album (Sibling Rivalry), L: Nefertiti; R: Nefertiti's sister, Mutnedjmet  (1980/1994)
Cibachrome prints, 26h x 37w in (66h x 94w cm)
Edition of 8 with 1 AP
Miscegenated Family Album (Sibling Rivalry), L: Nefertiti; R: Nefertiti's sister, Mutnedjmet (1980/1994)
Cibachrome prints, 26h x 37w in (66h x 94w cm)
Edition of 8 with 1 AP
Miscegenated Family Album (Sisters I), L: Nefernefruaten Nefertiti; R: Devonia Evangeline O'Grady  (1980/1994)
Cibachrome prints, 26h x 37w in (66h x 94w cm)
Edition of 8 with 1 AP
Miscegenated Family Album (Sisters I), L: Nefernefruaten Nefertiti; R: Devonia Evangeline O'Grady (1980/1994)
Cibachrome prints, 26h x 37w in (66h x 94w cm)
Edition of 8 with 1 AP
Miscegenated Family Album (Sisters II), L: Nefertiti's daughter Merytaten; R: Devonia's daughter  (1980/1994)
Cibachrome prints, 26h x 37w in (66h x 94w cm)
Edition of 8 with 1 AP
Miscegenated Family Album (Sisters II), L: Nefertiti's daughter Merytaten; R: Devonia's daughter (1980/1994)
Cibachrome prints, 26h x 37w in (66h x 94w cm)
Edition of 8 with 1 AP
Miscegenated Family Album (Sisters III), L: Nefertiti's daughter, Maketaten; R: Devonia's daughter, Kimberley  (1980/1994)
Cibachrome prints, 26h x 37w in (66h x 94w cm)
Edition of 8 with 1 AP
Miscegenated Family Album (Sisters III), L: Nefertiti's daughter, Maketaten; R: Devonia's daughter, Kimberley (1980/1994)
Cibachrome prints, 26h x 37w in (66h x 94w cm)
Edition of 8 with 1 AP
Miscegenated Family Album (Sisters IV), L: Devonia's sister, Lorraine; R: Nefertiti's sister, Mutnedjmet (1980/1994)
Cibachrome prints, 26h x 37w in (66h x 94w cm)
Edition of 8 with 1 AP
Miscegenated Family Album (Sisters IV), L: Devonia's sister, Lorraine; R: Nefertiti's sister, Mutnedjmet (1980/1994)
Cibachrome prints, 26h x 37w in (66h x 94w cm)
Edition of 8 with 1 AP
Miscegenated Family Album (Ceremonial Occasions I), L: Devonia as Matron of Honor; R: Nefertiti performing a lustration (1980/1994)
Cibachrome prints, 26h x 37w in (66h x 94w cm)
Edition of 8 with 1 AP
Miscegenated Family Album (Ceremonial Occasions I), L: Devonia as Matron of Honor; R: Nefertiti performing a lustration (1980/1994)
Cibachrome prints, 26h x 37w in (66h x 94w cm)
Edition of 8 with 1 AP
Miscegenated Family Album (Ceremonial Occasions II), L: Devonia attending a wedding; R: Nefertiti performing an Aten ritual  (1980/1994)
Cibachrome prints, 26h x 37w in (66h x 94w cm)
Edition of 8 with 1 AP
Miscegenated Family Album (Ceremonial Occasions II), L: Devonia attending a wedding; R: Nefertiti performing an Aten ritual (1980/1994)
Cibachrome prints, 26h x 37w in (66h x 94w cm)
Edition of 8 with 1 AP
Miscegenated Family Album (A Mother's Kiss), T: Candace and Devonia; B: Nefertiti and daughter  (1980/1994), cibachrome prints
37h x 26w in (94h x 66w cm), edition of 8 with 1 AP
Miscegenated Family Album (A Mother's Kiss), T: Candace and Devonia; B: Nefertiti and daughter (1980/1994), cibachrome prints
37h x 26w in (94h x 66w cm), edition of 8 with 1 AP
Miscegenated Family Album (Motherhood), L: Nefertiti; R: Devonia reading to Candace and Edward, Jr. (1980/1994)
Cibachrome prints, 26h x 37w in (66h x 94w cm)
Edition of 8 with 1 AP
Miscegenated Family Album (Motherhood), L: Nefertiti; R: Devonia reading to Candace and Edward, Jr. (1980/1994)
Cibachrome prints, 26h x 37w in (66h x 94w cm)
Edition of 8 with 1 AP
Miscegenated Family Album (Young Princesses), L: Nefertiti's daughter, Ankhesenpaaten; R: Devonia's daughter, Candace  (1980/1994)
Cibachrome prints, 26h x 37w in (66h x 94w cm)
Edition of 8 with 1 AP
Miscegenated Family Album (Young Princesses), L: Nefertiti's daughter, Ankhesenpaaten; R: Devonia's daughter, Candace (1980/1994)
Cibachrome prints, 26h x 37w in (66h x 94w cm)
Edition of 8 with 1 AP
Miscegenated Family Album (Worldly Princesses), L: Nefertiti's daughter, Merytaten; R: Devonia's daughter, Kimberley  (1980/1994)
Cibachrome prints, 26h x 37w in (66h x 94w cm)
Edition of 8 with 1 AP
Miscegenated Family Album (Worldly Princesses), L: Nefertiti's daughter, Merytaten; R: Devonia's daughter, Kimberley (1980/1994)
Cibachrome prints, 26h x 37w in (66h x 94w cm)
Edition of 8 with 1 AP
Miscegenated Family Album (Crowned Heads), L: Nefertiti's husband, Akhenaten; R: Devonia's husband Edward  (1980/1994)
Cibachrome prints, 26h x 37w in (66h x 94w cm)
Edition of 8 with 1 AP
Miscegenated Family Album (Crowned Heads), L: Nefertiti's husband, Akhenaten; R: Devonia's husband Edward (1980/1994)
Cibachrome prints, 26h x 37w in (66h x 94w cm)
Edition of 8 with 1 AP
Miscegenated Family Album (Young Queens), L: Nefertiti, age 24; R: Devonia, age 24  (1980/1994)
Cibachrome prints, 26h x 37w in (66h x 94w cm)
Edition of 8 with 1 AP
Miscegenated Family Album (Young Queens), L: Nefertiti, age 24; R: Devonia, age 24 (1980/1994)
Cibachrome prints, 26h x 37w in (66h x 94w cm)
Edition of 8 with 1 AP
Miscegenated Family Album (Progress of Queens), L: Devonia, age 36; R: Nefertiti, age 36  (1980/1994)
Cibachrome prints, 26h x 37w in (66h x 94w cm)
Edition of 8 with 1 AP
Miscegenated Family Album (Progress of Queens), L: Devonia, age 36; R: Nefertiti, age 36 (1980/1994)
Cibachrome prints, 26h x 37w in (66h x 94w cm)
Edition of 8 with 1 AP
Miscegenated Family Album (Cross Generational), L: Nefertiti, the last image; R: Devonia's youngest daughter, Kimberley (1980/1994)
Cibachrome prints, 26h x 37w in (66h x 94w cm)
Edition of 8 with 1 AP
Miscegenated Family Album (Cross Generational), L: Nefertiti, the last image; R: Devonia's youngest daughter, Kimberley (1980/1994)
Cibachrome prints, 26h x 37w in (66h x 94w cm)
Edition of 8 with 1 AP
Miscegenated Family Album (Hero Worship), L: Devonia, age 14; and Lorraine, age 3; R: Devonia, age 24; and Lorraine, age 13 (1980/1994)
Cibachrome prints, 26h x 37w in (66h x 94w cm)
Edition of 8 with 1 AP
Miscegenated Family Album (Hero Worship), L: Devonia, age 14; and Lorraine, age 3; R: Devonia, age 24; and Lorraine, age 13 (1980/1994)
Cibachrome prints, 26h x 37w in (66h x 94w cm)
Edition of 8 with 1 AP

About this Series / Project

Lorraine O’Grady’s iconic series, Miscegenated Family Album (1980/1994) is a photo-installation of 16 cibachrome diptychs that originated from her 1980 performance piece Nefertiti/Devonia Evangeline, first presented a Just Above Midtown. The images from this “novel in space,” as the artist describes the work, were selected from the 65 image pairs first presented as part of Nefertiti/Devonia Evangeline. The original performance addressed mourning and reconciliation through O’Grady’s live action and the accompanying projected slideshow that compared images of O’Grady’s older sister Devonia with the Egyptian Queen Nefertiti, along with photographs that included their respective families.

O’Grady visited Egypt two years after her sister Devonia died. In Cairo in her twenties, she found herself surrounded for the first time by people who looked like her. While for most people this is a common occurrence, it was something new for O’Grady, who had not previously experienced feeling surrounded by people that resembled her, neither in Boston nor Harlem. While walking the streets of Cairo, the loss of her only sibling became confounded with the image of a larger family gained. When she returned to the States, she began painstaking research focused on Ancient Egypt, especially the Amarna period of Nefertiti and Akhenaton. In her words, “I had always thought Devonia looked like Nefertiti, but as I read and looked, I found narrative and visual resemblances throughout both families.”

For Miscegenated Family Album, O’Grady recuperated the pejorative word “miscegenation,” coined in 1863 and then used for the post-Civil War laws making interracial marriage illegal — laws not struck down by the Supreme Court until 1967. In this strongly feminist “novel in space,” O’Grady attempts to resolve a troubled relationship with her only sister Devonia, who died early and unexpectedly, by inserting their story into that of Nefertiti and her younger sister Mutnedjmet. Building on remarkable physical resemblances, the paired images span the coeval distance between sibling rivalry and hero worship through “chapters” on such topics as motherhood, ceremonial occasions, husbands and aging. At the same time, in O’Grady’s view of Ancient Egypt as a “bridge” country, the cultural and racial amalgamation of Africa and the Middle East which flourished only after its northern and southern halves were united in 3000 BC, both families, one ancient and royal, the other modern and descended from slaves, are seen to be products of nearly identical historic forces. For this reason, O’Grady’s vision of showing Miscegenated Family Album alongside displays of Egyptian artifacts and sculptures became the ideal context in which to exhibit this set of images that drew uncanny aesthetic parallels, while weaving together narratives that connected personal stories with historical events.

Artist Info