At the New Museum, Lynn Hershman Leeson’s Alter Ego is Her Art
Exhibition Review
Jul 6, 2021
Blake Gopnik On Art
Blake Gopnik

THE DAILY PIC is a 1976 driver’s license that the artist Lynn Hershman Leeson applied for in the name of her alter ego Roberta Breitmore, for a wonderful project documented in Hershman Leeson’s retrospective at the New Museum in New York. (This version of the license is from MoMA’s collection.)Begining in 1973, Hershman Leeson spent several years inhabiting the fictional persona of Breitmore, living real chunks of her life as this rather nondescript and completely invented creature. “Breitmore” rented an apartment, interacted with roommates, visited a shrink, applied for credit cards … and a driver’s license, all without giving away that an artist named Lynn was pulling her puppet strings. I know it’s lame to dwell on an artist’s best-known work, but the Breitmore piece is so great that I can’t resist.