Lloyd Spencer on ‘Ballad of Sexual Dependency’, a personal reflection

Thanks to Lloyd Spencer for this reflection on Goldin’s book. If you would like to share your thoughts, see here.

A fascinating, compelling book. “Diary” is correct as it is the rather seedy and dissolute life that provides the real interest. Writing compellingly about such a life requires more skill than taking photos. Finding the words for the chaotic collisions, the violence or traces of violence, deciding how much to quote or report, what perspective to adopt: photography doesn’t really pose any of these challenges.

Nan Goldin emerges as a competent photographer and someone who probably lived her life (or her life ‘then’) as a kind of unfolding photobook . . .

The result is a pretty unique work. But unique (unmatched) also in Goldin’s subsequent career…

– Lloyd Spencer




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