March 19, 1973

Melissa Shook, American, 1939 - 2020



Gelatin silver print

Sheet: 4 3/8 × 4 3/8 in. (11.1 × 11.1 cm)

Hood Museum of Art, Dartmouth: Purchased through the Elizabeth and David C. Lowenstein '67 Fund

© Melissa Shook



Place Made: United States, North America


20th century

Object Name


Research Area


On view


These images represent two days in the life of Melissa Shook, part of a series the artist returned to every few years in which she took daily self-portraits. The artist used these images to confront areas of personal interest, including her need to make visual memories that would outlast her and her feminist concern with how to portray herself as a woman without giving into a misogynistic sexualization of the body. Contorting her face and body into awkward, uncomfortable, and humorous configurations, Shook displayed herself as vulnerable and human but not defined by her sexual appeal.

From the 2024 exhibition An Instant Out of Time: Shaping a Collection, curated by Alisa Swindell, Associate Curator of Photography

Course History

Art History 48.02, Histories of Photography, Katie Hornstein, Spring 2024

African and African American Studies 63.01, Sociology 71.01, Race Matters: Race Made to Matter, Trica Keaton, Spring 2024

Music 18.03, African and African American Studies 39.07, Verzuz: A History of Black Popular Music, Allie Martin, Spring 2024

Exhibition History

An Instant Out of Time: Shaping a Collection, Ivan Albright Gallery, Hood Museum of Art, Dartmouth College, Hanover, New Hampshire, April 20-July 21, 2024.


Miyako Yoshinaga Gallery, New York, New York; sold to present collection, 2022.

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