Tierney Gearon

Tierney Gearon (born 9 September 1963) is an American photographer who came to prominence in Britain after a media controversy over her work at the Saatchi Gallery. She was born in Atlanta, Georgia. She had no formal art training, but studied ballet in Utah, where a European model agency saw her. This led to five years of modelling and travelling the world. During this time she took up photography herself. A Paris agent saw some of her Polaroid photos and encouraged her to do more work. She then became a fashion photographer for five years. Her work was used in magazines and on Times Square billboards. Large blow-ups of her photos of her two children (daughter age seven and son age four) were exhibited in the show I Am a Camera at the Saatchi Gallery in March 2001. These included two naked poses and one of her son urinating in the snow. There were three complaints by members of the public, and the police visited the gallery twice, causing a great deal of media coverage, debating the rights and wrongs of such work, generally in favour of Gearon. The press reported police threats to seize the work, but this was denied by the police and no further action was taken.

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