As the world sinks into tabloid chaos with speculation on Kate’s photoshop faux pas, one can’t help but wonder: what on earth goes on within the walls of the monarchy? Secrets lie veiled behind the regal confines of Buckingham Palace, and rumour has it that newly reigned Queen Camilla is going through it amidst Kate’s vanishing act, crown perched atop her head, whiskey clutched tightly in one hand, cigarette dangling from the other. And there, in the shadows, the apparition of Princess Diana casts her a knowing smile, middle finger standing tall. While Camilla contends with her breakdown, palace life persists…
Descend further into the gilded walls of excess and you’ll find that each room reveals its own hidden truth. First door in, David Beckham lies stripped of all, perplexed in gaze, ‘Is the hotdog American?’, he ponders. As you move through the connecting door, currency rains down on you, only to be met with an unwanted sight – Donald Trump frolicking with companions, but some sights are best left unseen… moving on to the next door. Kate! There she is! Caught in a moment of mundane bliss, as she munches on a fish finger sandwich while William grapples with his brother’s memoir. Halt the mission, she’s been found!
Before we get further lost into this mildly distressed tale, let’s take a step back and acknowledge its absurdity. Fabricated though it may be, this storyline served as a mirror to the exaggerated world of tabloid frenzy and royal speculation, inviting us to question the fine line between reality and illusion in our celebrity-obsessed culture. It’s precisely this blurred boundary that Alison Jackson seeks to explore in her exhibition Truth is Dead, where she employs staged paparazzi shots and simulated documentary footage to highlight the often tenuous relationship between reality and illusion. Who would’ve imagined coming across a Camilla impersonator this dead-on?
Fotomuseum aan het Vrijthof in Maastricht, the Netherlands, presents this British photographer and filmmaker’s exhibition. Until September 15th, the exhibition presents sixty witty portraits of international celebrities, accompanied by two videos – ideally free of any Trump cameos.