Urgent Museum Notice

He Drowned in her Eyes as she called him to follow (Capri interieur)

Close up of He Drowned in her Eyes as she called him to follow (Capri interieur)

A photograph portrays a woman clad in an aqua blue slip dress. She sits in a wicker chair in a naturally lit room with red marble flooring. Her head and shoulders slump forward so that her long brown hair obscures her face. A water-filled latex balloon encloses her left hand.

Janaina Tschäpe, He Drowned in her Eyes as she called him to follow (Capri interieur), 1999; Cibachrome on aluminium, 40 ix 65 in.; National Museum of Women in the Arts, Gift of Heather and Tony Podesta Collection; © Janaina Tschäpe

He Drowned in her Eyes as she called him to follow (Capri interieur)
Janaina Tschäpe

Janaina Tschäpe’s namesake is an Afro-Brazilian water goddess, and aquatic themes recur throughout much of her art. Tschäpe created this photograph while she developed her video He Drowned in Her Eyes as She Called Him to Follow (2000), her imagining of the experiences of a mermaid brought ashore in a fisherman’s net, only to wander about in a dreamlike state.

Tschäpe used creative costuming to present her mermaid as an illusory or fantastical being. In addition to an ocean-blue-colored dress, the woman wears a water-filled latex balloon over her left hand, signifying that she is partly made of water. Reflecting on the desire for constant metamorphosis, Tschäpe often features models wearing colorful biomorphic costumes with appendages made from fabric, water-filled latex, or inflatables, likening them to imaginary or mythical creatures.

Artwork Details

  • Artist

    Janaina Tschäpe
  • Title

    He Drowned in her Eyes as she called him to follow (Capri interieur)
  • Date

    2011
  • Medium

    Chromogenic color print
  • Dimensions

    40 x 65 in.
  • Donor Credit

    Gift of the Heather and Tony Podesta Collection
  • Photo Credit

    © Janaina Tschäpe
  • On Display

    No