Interview With Kembra Pfahler

What comes to mind when I say the word 'nude?' and 'naked?'

Naked and nude to me means without clothes. No underwear ... no shirt... not a half measure.

What comes to mind with those words is a memory I have of the first time I took all my clothes off at the beach on the Pacific Coast Highway in a little house we moved up to from Hermosa beach when I was 12. In Malibu we had a neighbor, Jim Mitchum, Robert Mitchum's son. He was the first man I remember seeing naked and nude. We used to swim and run around like beasts and it's a good memory. I am not a nudist though; I am only naked with Karen Black when I feel like it.


In 2012 you collaborated wit E.V.Day on Giverny, a series of photographic works which place you in your Karen Black attire in the gardens made famous by painter Claude Monet. What was the inspiration for the project?

The inspiration for the Claude Monet piece came because because E.V. Day was chosen to be part of a residency program at Claude Monet's country house in Giverny, France. It was part of the 'Versailles Foundation' and is for only the best artists from around the world. She imagined it would be a good idea to photograph me in my Karen Black look and I concurred. Beth Rudin Deroody is an amazing woman in the art world and organized for me to go. At the time, I didn't know anything about impressionism, I didn't study European art history in school. It was through E.V.'s eyes that I saw this garden: the light, the extreme verdant tones and the singular vision of Monet.

The Claude Monet Garden Show later happened at The Hole where we recreated the garden and showed the photos she shot there. The effect was anti-natural. It was the best show I have ever been involved with. I learned so much from E.V. and Kathy Grayson pushed us to go where no gallery would think of going, putting an actual pond and bridge replica in the space, with live plants and fish. It all worked out very well.

To read the full interview, take a look at the latest volume of  "Nude + Naked + MORE"

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