In this series, first exhibited at ClampArt as a part of “The Hand of God,” Nancy Burson presents a companion piece to her series, “Guys Who Look Like Jesus,” turning the focus of the portraits towards the Virgin Mary. Unlike the series depicting the figure of Jesus, where she acquired the subjects of the portraits through a “Village Voice” ad, Burson photographed women of various ethnicities whom she personally knew and believed to resemble the religious icon.

In this series, as well as in the companion piece, the artist bookends the photographs with both a composite portrait of these likenesses plus another amalgam of art historical representations of the religious figure. Burson takes viewers’ expectation of the appearance of the religious icon and juxtaposes it with the images of her photographic subjects.