Capturing an icon in filmmaker Ondi Timoner’s ‘Mapplethorpe’

Director Ondi Timoner has made a career telling stories of artists driven to the edge by their creative pursuits…often to the detriment of their personal lives.

As a documentarian she made the cult favorite DIG! about the friendship/rivalry of rockers Courtney Taylor-Taylor and Anton Newcombe. She followed it up with We Live in Public, Amanda F***ng Palmer on the Rocks, and Brand: A Second Coming. Robert Mapplethorpe (already the subject of several biographies and documentaries) is the latest artist to be examined by Timoner, who’s made her narrative debut with Mapplethorpe; or as she specifies, her first scripted feature. Starring Matt Smith as Mapplethorpe opposite, Marianne Rendón, John Benjamin Hickey and Brandon Sklenar, Timoner’s portrait of the prolific and controversial artist received the Second Place Audience Award (To Dust won first place) at this year’s Tribeca Film Festival.

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Photo Credit: Jolene Siana @jolenesiana