An activist, muse, and healer, du Prey performed throughout the United States, Western Europe and Canada during the AIDS crisis. Whether worn on the artist’s body or presented on a male-form mannequin, du Prey’s series of rotating, suspended or sunken dress-sculptures embody a dual-gendered spirit.
Reynolds’ public exploration of gender and persona was influenced by the East Village drag scene of the mid-1980s and nights spent at the Pyramid Club. This project formally debuted with Drag at Simon Watson Gallery in 1990. As documented in archival footage, that exhibition centered on the portrait series Drag Pose, photographed by Michael Wakefield, and Reynolds’ ritual transformation into du Prey. Seated before The Vanity (1989), Reynolds publicly made himself up, donned a dark blue taffeta dress and entered the Drag Pose Cage (1990), where a temporarily corporeal du Prey would vogue, lounge, or speak to viewers as part of a daily endurance performance.