The Ballad of Sexual Dependency is a visual diary chronicling the struggle for intimacy and understanding between friends, family and lovers - collectively described by Goldin as her 'tribe.' Her work describes a world that is visceral, charged, and seething with life. First published in 1986, this reissue recognises the persistent relevance and freshness of Nan Goldin's cutting-edge photography.
Her lush colour photography and candid style demand that the viewer go beyond the surface to encounter a profound intensity. As Goldin writes: 'Real memory, which these pictures trigger, is an invocation of the colour, small, sound and physical presence, the density and flavour of life.' Through an accurate and detailed record of her life, Ballad reveals Goldin's personal odyssey, as well as a more universal understanding of the different languages men and woman speak, and the struggle between autonomy and dependency.
Over the past twenty years, the influence of Ballad on photography and other aesthetic realms has continually grown, making the work a contemporary classic. Nan Goldin's story of urban life on the fringe was the swan song of an era that reached its peak in the early eighties. Yet is has captured and important element of humanity that is transcendent: a need to connect.