October 10, 2013
Leigh Ledare's, project Pretend You’re Actually Alive, is an intimate portrait of his mother's sexuality and it recalls the photographic work of Larry Clark, Nan Goldin and Richard Billingham.
Ledare’s photographs of his mother are as much about performance as they are about her life They’re clearly a collaborative effort; Ledare’s mother, Tina Peterson, is very obviously engaged in the process. There is some indication that she, in fact, proposed the idea for the project to her son. Her perfomance is central.
Leigh Ledare, Tina Peterson, 2008
Peterson was aging and attempted to resist that through projecting her sexuality and tying herself to younger boyfriends. These photographs of subjectivity, performance and portraiture undermine stereotypical attitudes towards the mother figure.