Sophie Calle, ‘Take care of yourself. Latinist, Anne Marie Ozanam’, 2007, Galerie Perrotin

I received an email telling me it was over. I didn’t know how to respond It was almost as if it hadn’t been meant for me. It ended with the words, Take care of yourself. I followed this advice to the letter I asked 107 women (as well as two handpuppets and a parrot), chosen for their profession or skills, to interpret the letter. To analyse it, comment on it, dance it, sing it. Dissect it. Exhaust it. Understand it for me. Answer for me. It was a way of taking the time to break up A way to take care of myself.

About Sophie Calle

A controversial figure as well as one of France’s leading conceptual artists, Sophie Calle explores her own psychological and emotional terrain in multimedia works, probing ideas of control, freedom, gender, intimacy, and distance in human relationships. Perhaps her most contentious work, Address Book (1983) was inspired by an address book that Calle found on the street, photographed, and sent back to its owner. She then rang the numbers in the book to assemble a portrait of the owner, turning the results into a multimedia installation. For Take Care of Yourself (2007), which was exhibited in the French pavilion at the 2007 Venice Biennale, Calle invited 107 women from various walks of life to interpret and assess a breakup note the artist received in an email. In a range of media including photographic portraits, textual analysis, and filmed performances, women pore over the emotional content of the email; contributions include a clairvoyant’s response, a scientific study, and a child’s fairytale.

French, b. 1953, Paris, France, based in Switzerland

Exhibition Highlights On Artsy

Mark My Words, Gemini G.E.L. at Joni Moisant Weyl, New York
The Venetians, Gemini G.E.L. at Joni Moisant Weyl, New York
Icon(s), Maison Particulière, Brussels