"As a spectator, I wanted to explore photography not as a question (a theme) but as a wound,"Roland Barthes writes in Camera Lucida. Similarly, in the famous first lines of his surrealist book Nadja, Andre Breton concluded that the question he should ask himself should be "not who I am, but whom I haunt." Could either of these quotes apply to Lee Miller's aesthetic as well ? While her photographs during her period of "apprenticeship" with Man Ray focused on the female body, and the ones in her studio in New York on elegant portraiture, it is during her period in Egypt when she was married to the wealthy Egyptian businessman Aziz that her photography truly blossomed into her own aesthetic which "married" the humor and the ludic notions of space found in certain Magritte paintings with the curious gaze of the 'other' that she would develop as a photo-journalist during the war. Her photos during her Egyptian period are filled with a restlessness and a thirst for adrenaline that would stoke her wartime experiences.
Original Publication Citation
Peter Schulman, Sands of desire: The Creative Restlessness of Lee Miller’s Egyptian Period, Miranda [Online], 14 | 2017, Online since 03 April 2017, connection on 05 October 2017. URL : http://miranda.revues.org/9855 ; DOI : 10.4000/miranda.9855
Schulman, Peter, "Sands of Desire:The Creative Restlessness of Lee Miller's Egyptian Period" (2017). World Languages and Cultures Faculty Publications. 2.