If you've ever sent a nudie pic to your significant other, and you've wondered what the grainy image would look like in the hands of a master portraitist -- a da Vinci, say, or a Caravaggio -- performance artist Karen Finley is about to make your kinky art history nerd dreams come true. From May 23 to May 26, the artist is asking the public to send her their personal sexts, which she will reproduce as a series of paintings in an installation at the New Museum.
The process works like this: for a fee ($200 for a work on paper, $500 for an oil on canvas), the exhibitionistically inclined can arrange brief private sittings with Finley. They'll be given the artist's private phone number and can snap away. Once Finley has received the photos, she'll translate them into a series of paintings to be publicly displayed in the New Museum lobby. After the exhibition closes on May 26, the subjects can take home their work to be stored as a memento of free-spirited youth, or hung in the living room to the chagrin of friends and family.
Finley, a professor at New York University's Tisch School of the Arts, has never shied away from controversy. In 1990, she was one of four artists whose NEA grants were revoked on the grounds that their work was obscene. "Sext Me If You Can" is presented by NE 4 In Residence, which revisits the four grant recipients' work.