Art

11.5.2013

Madonna The Beautiful Alien By Richard Corman

It’s no secret that Madonna is fearless — she singlehandedly turned the cone bra into an iconic stage costume after all — but she was completely unafraid to throw herself into any situation even way back in 1983 before she’d released a single chart-topping hit. That’s the year that the budding star and photographer Richard Corman went on a series of photo shoots throughout the Lower East Side that have been collected in Corman’s new photography book, Madonna NYC83, which you’ll be able to see up close at a special exhibition in Milk Gallery starting November 15. On one of these trips, the pair found themselves in front of a nursing home, and Madonna, as Corman told us, didn’t think twice before planting herself at the center of the moment:

It was called The American Nursing Home and it was just so unpredictable I could never have imagined it. When we passed the nursing home, she just kinda nuzzled up between these people. Not a word was spoken — she was this beautiful alien and they had no idea what she was doing, or for that matter what I was doing, but it didn’t stop us. They didn’t get up and walk away but just sat there and the moment was brilliant.

I don’t think I appreciated the picture as much as I do today — it has so much humor to it but she just has this straight face and it’s delightful. She was so brazen, I mean, these people were sitting shoulder to shoulder and she just sat next to them and it was great. Look at the guys looking away and the women there almost clueless — but they’re all engaged. If I was directing this I would want them to do exactly what they did. So many times in my world the experience outweighs any photograph I could take and that moment was special.

Madonna NYC83 runs in Milk Gallery from November 15 to December 15. Get ready.

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