Man Ray, Salvador Dali, Jean Cocteau, and Pablo Picasso were all counted among the artist friends of the American photographer Lee Miller. Starting out as a model in front of the camera for American Vogue in 1927, Miller quickly moved behind it to create an individual body of work inspired heavily by Surrealism. The surrealists used visual imagery that showed ordinary objects in strange and unusual ways, in order to create compelling and often emotional art. This exhibition at Øregaard includes photographs from many periods of her life, organised by the Lee Miller Archive in England and the Mjellby Konstmuseum in Halmstad in Sweden.
As a model in New York, Lee Miller had two years of fame posing for renowned photographers including Edward Steichen and Arnold Genthe. Her move to Paris in 1929 to become the assistant, model, collaborator and lover of avant-garde photographer Man Ray changed the course of her work. Together they used new darkroom techniques like solarisation for artistic effect, with an image that is partially reversed in tone. Miller made portraits and satirical drawings, and photographed enigmatic street scenes and elegant near-abstractions. Her creativity and technique during this period resulted in some of the most radical nudes of the time – described as transforming the female torso into a phallus.