Upping the anti in Claude Cahun and Marcel Moore's collaborative "self-portraits"
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This thesis addresses the themes of identity, gender and self-representation through an examination of the large body of so-called self-portraits created by Claude Cahun (1894-1954) and Marcel Moore (1892-1972). Following the recent shift in scholarship on Cahun--who has typically been understood as a singular artist--I refer to Cahun and Moore as partners and collaborators whose work can no longer be addressed individually. In exploration of an alternative approach to understanding these images as other than self-portraits, I investigate both artists' numerous creative activities that coincided with the creation of these images, including artistic, literary, and theatrical work, as well as their engagement with Surrealism and political activism. The self-portrait images are often discussed in isolation from these other highly relevant undertakings. My argument is structured around an understanding of Cahun and Moore's photographs not as a portrayal of the self, but rather, as a practice of anti self-portraiture.