Voices: An Artistâ€™s Perspective
Copyright 2015 by UniteWomen.org and Karen Gutfreund Art. The book author and each artist here, retains sole copyright to their contributions to this book. Catalog designed by Karen Gutfreund, Curator and Exhibition Director Cover Design by: Priscilla Otani Printed by: PrintPapa, www.printpapa.com ISBN: 978-1-939637-11-6
ABOUT UNITEWOMEN.ORG UniteWomen.org was founded on social media, by one click of a mouse used to start a Facebook group. We have rapidly grown from that instantaneous start into having more than 120,000 followers and thousands working in the trenches with us on a daily basis. Everyone in UniteWomen.org is a volunteer, from the President to the volunteers handing out flyers on the streets. The fact that we are an organization comprised of people so devoted to equality that they are willing to donate their time to forward the cause brings us great pride, and it fuels our passion to work hard and accomplish our goals. Ten weeks into our birth, we achieved our initial goal of organizing and implementing 55 rallies in 45 states across the country – all held on one day. Our group was then called, “Unite Against the War On Women.” We utilized all aspects of social media, and continue to do that every day on the national and local levels. Those rallies may have been our initial goal but we soon realized in order to really make a difference in women’s lives, we needed to create an organization, using social media platforms to spread information about protests, campaigns, legislation, calls to action and unification. Hence, UniteWomen.org was created. On a daily basis, we manage over 250 different Facebook groups and hold meetings on Google Hangout with volunteers from across the country in real time. We also have a Campus Division, graphics, legislative, outreach, research and twitter departments, 12 monthly task force campaigns for various human rights issues. Social Media enables us to work as a cohesive team from our own homes, and we have already accomplished so much that sometimes it’s overwhelming to think about it all! Our groups have held vigils, protests, voter registration drives, volunteered at clinics and domestic violence shelters, held many coordinated social media events – including several Twitter bombs. We’ve met with legislators, joined with other groups for unification of human rights advocates, sponsored pro-choice events, co-sponsored the Suffrage Centennial Celebration in D.C., run campaigns such as Unite Against Rape and We Are Good Women. We have taken local initiatives started by others and brought them onto the national scale, such as Bethany Erickson’s Need Your Permission campaign. We have spoken at political and social conferences, protested conferences and statehouses. Most importantly, we have given a voice to tens of thousands of women in America who felt disenfranchised and wanted some way to take part in the now historic fight against the legislative War on Women. There are two branches of UniteWomen.org: UniteWomen.org and UniteWomen.org Action. The former is for educational and social justice work. The latter is geared toward having a political voice to lobby for or against legislation. We want to speak loudly – we want ALL women (and men who support women) to speak loudly. UniteWomen.org wants our voices to resonate and be heard as we teach, contemplate, engage, volunteer, unite, sponsor events, protest, meet with legislators and members of our communities and arm our members with the tools they need to fully participate in the political process for women’s rights and human rights.
UniteWomen.org and Voices: An Artist’s Perspective In September of 2012, I was asked to speak at the Honoring Women’s Rights Conference in Salinas on the Activism panel and as the closing speaker. The conference was an interesting mix of activists, artists and educators. I had the privilege of meeting so many amazing women and walked away with a strong desire to want to promote and feature artists speaking out for women’s rights through their work. Voices: An Artist’s Perspective is second year of a continuing series promoting women’s art. Women’s Rights: An Artist’s Perspective was our initial exhibit. In addition to fighting the issues that affect women’s lives, UniteWomen.org is educating the public about so many issues women face. Unite Against Rape brings awareness of the rape culture in which we live. We Are Good Women gives a voice to women who have experienced something in their lives that society deems “bad”. Voices: An Artist’s Perspective exposes our community to another expression of an activist voice. I am so honored to work with Karen Gutfreund on this project for UniteWomen.org to profile the many incredible artists in this catalog and their interpretation of women’s voices. Thank you all for adding your voice to this continuing struggle for equality. If you would like to get involved with UniteWomen.org or make a donation, please visit our website at www.unitewomen.org UniteWomen.org is a national non-partisan 501(c)(3) tax-exempt nonprofit organization that works to end inequality for women that stems from prejudice and discrimination and works to advance the human and civil rights of women and girls. Donations to the organization are tax-deductible to the fullest extent of the law. UniteWomen.org Action is a registered 501(c)(4) nonprofit advocacy and lobbying organization for the cause. Contributions to UniteWomen.org Action are not tax deductible. Karen Teegarden President and CEO UniteWomen.org/UniteWomen.org Action SOCIAL MEDIA facebook.com/unitewomen | twitter.com/unitewomenorg | youtube.com/unitewomen | pinterest.com/unitewomen
NOTE FROM THE EXHIBITION DIRECTOR Karen M. Gutfreund, Curator/Artist
I was pleased and honored to be the curator and exhibition director again for UniteWomen.org and be involved with the important work they are doing for Women’s Rights. We announced the exhibition for Voices: An Artist's Perspective as a fundraiser in support of the organizations work on Women’s Rights and the passage of the ERA. “Voices” is a feminist exhibition with women artists raising their voices to tell individual stories that advocate for the fight for social, cultural, economic and political rights and the inclusion of all voices in its push for gender equality and identity using a woman's voice as the visual narrative to effect change. Works, in all media, were chosen that speak to, examine and explores the social, political and economic issues related to women’s activism; art that expresses the women’s perspective on issues of identity, gender, women’s rights, political rights, reproductive rights, and issues of societal control and justice. The art ranges from literal to poetic, abstract to representational, and psychological, to social and political commentary. Many of the works explore the concepts of being a woman in today’s global society and how social constructs define their experience whether internal, external, imagined or imposed, and how this defined and shaped identities, relationships, ideas and politics. It is the intention of UniteWomen.org and Karen Gutfreund Art to present these issues in visual form, creating a public forum for action, reaction, and informed discussion. For this exhibition we asked our jurors Amanda L. Uribe and Joan McLoughlin, choose their top three works each and they gave guidance on the works they found powerful and spoke to the theme. The juror’s picks were: Jocelyn Braxton Armstrong, Joanne Beaule Ruggles, Cat Del Buono, Donna Festa, Allison McElroy and Sondra Schwetman. Karen Teegarden and I chose the 26 artists for the N.A.W.A. Gallery and the additional 102 artists for the online gallery. There was so much beautiful work and it was very difficult to narrow it down. I fell in love with the works and wish the gallery were ten times the size to have been able to include them all. And I was deeply touched by the artist statements, I’m sure, you the viewer will be enthralled and engaged too by this extraordinary body of work. In addition to the artwork, we also have a number of essays, poems and writings from artists on a variety of subjects. Art can be a powerful, productive force and instrumental in sparking change or critical thinking. As a feminist exhibition director, I am committed to promoting women’s art and supporting local, national, and global art activism. Art can produce a visceral response and can provoke, inspire, or disturb, and opens your eyes to worlds other than your own. While the artist may not consider themselves to be a revolutionary, by bringing to light issues and concerns, art can effect change. We need art that help us to understand what is happening in our society, who we are, where we come from and where we’re going. A big thank you to the N.A.W.A. Gallery (National Association of Women Artists) in NYC for hosting this important exhibition and giving opportunities and supporting women in the arts. 6
Jurorâ€™s Statement: Joan McLoughlin
Voices is a powerful title for an important topic and one that is not addressed enough. Women's issues are typically not presented in the public let alone discussed in any detail. It is easier to ignore them. I selected 3 pieces by artists, Armstrong, Ruggles and Schwetman, which can not be ignored. Each is powerful, evocative and moving in their narrative. The viewer is drawn in to examine and explore these works and their message more closely. Artwork should speak to the audience emotionally, creating a dialogue, initiating a conversation as to what the artist is trying to convene. These 3 artists were successful in achieving this goal. Their work serves as a vehicle for the unheard voices of women and the issues they face. In viewing this exhibition, I am hopeful the audience will become more aware of issues women face around the world and become more proactive in initiating change and making a difference.
Juror’s Statement: Amanda L. Uribe Assistant Director The title of Voices lends way to awareness of many different topics. I was asked to choose my top three pieces of art that I felt fit the theme. While as a collective there are many avenues to discuss, the three artist described below address distinct issues, each with there own pressing value. Cat Del Buono’s video installation gives an essential platform to women who are victims of domestic violence. At first approach, you are bombarded by the echoing murmur of voices; these hums draw you to approach each individual screen allowing you to hear clearly the details of each person’s experience. As you pass through the infinite screens, it becomes obvious that far too many women have experienced this viciousness. Making it clear that any time we can give an audience to this barbarisms, we must do so. We are at war with aging; the young have long reined the archetype of what is beautiful and our culture emphasizes this. It is in Donna Fiesta’s work that we are reminded of our value even after the canonic definition is no longer visible. Fiesta’s thick, wet brushstrokes mimic the aging process and gesture us to remember our self worth and beauty at all points of our lives. Allison McElroy’s work is reminiscent of the constant working and reworking of our selves. As mothers, wives, daughters, even aunts, we have an influential roll on those around us. It is because of this that we are hyper aware of our own selves and our influences on other people. This responsibility forces us to acutely analyze and constantly improve ourselves. McElroy's process of text based work documenting her personal history in meticulously wrapped organic materials is a visualization of what we do in our own heads. It is an ironic fusion documenting and forming oneself in an organic material that is in all essence decaying material.
ABOUT THE GALLERY N.A.W.A. History In January of 1889, five innovative women, Grace Fitz-Randolph, Edith Mitchill Prellwitz, Adele Frances Bedell, Anita C. Ashley, and Elizabeth S. Cheever, barred from full participation in the male-dominated National Academy of Design and The Society of American Artists, founded the Women's Art Club. The organization flourished and in 1913 was renamed the National Association of Women Painters and Sculptors, reflecting its national influence and the increasing number of women sculptors. Through the 1920s the organization was sponsoring exhibitions nationally and abroad. In the 1930s membership grew to over 1,000 and the organization opened its Argent Galleries on 57th Street in New York City. In 1941, the organization changed its name again to the National Association of Women Artists. Early exhibitions included works by the notable artists Rosa Bonheur, Mary Cassatt, Suzanne Valadon and Cecelia Beaux. Later, membership rosters included Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney, Anna Hyatt Huntington, Louise Nevelson, Cleo Hartwig, Malvina Hoffman, Minna Citron, Alice Neel, Theresa Bernstein, Nell Blaine, and Dorothy Dehner. Mission Statement The purpose of the National Association of Women Artists (N.A.W.A.) is to foster public awareness of, and interest in, visual art created by women in the United States. The Association promotes culture and education in the visual arts through exhibitions of its members’ works, educational programs, scholarships, awards, its historical archive, and other appropriate means. While encouraging contemporary and emerging artists, the Association honors and continues the long and important contribution of women to the history of American culture and art. Through N.A.W.A.’s exhibitions, programs, events, education programs and archive, the Association fosters awareness of the monumental contribution of women to the history of American culture and art. The organization is inclusive and serves professional women visual artists of all backgrounds and traditions that are at least 18 years of age and U.S. citizens or permanent U.S. residents. N.A.W.A. is a 501©3 not-for profit, tax exempt organization. For further information, please contact us: N.A.W.A. 80 Fifth Avenue, Suite 1405 New York, NY 10011 Phone: 212.675.1616 Email: email@example.com URL. www.thenawa.org Ph. 212-675-1616 Empowering, promoting, supporting and encouraging women artists, since 1889. 9
*Denotes Jurors Choice by Joan McLoughlin **Denotes Jurors Choice by Amanda L. Uribe 11
Shonagh Adelman Long Island City, New York www.www.shonaghadelman.com
Venus de Mardi Gras 4mm glass and acrylic crystals on canvas 36 x 30 inches 2014
In this series, â€œBeastifulâ€?, 4mm colored crystal-coated canvases (some with embedded film loops on tablets) depict an array of masked and animal-headed figures in scenarios that conjure classic male gaze iconography. Combining multiple media and mashing up imagery from various sources, the work transforms the parameters of the hypothetical gaze by co-opting and suturing imagery, giving voice to the monstrous feminine.
Carrie Alter Chapel Hill, North Carolina www.carriealter.com
Alyson’s World Oil on canvas 30 x 30 inches 2010
“Alyson’s World” explores the isolation and fear felt by children growing up in a world that does not always feel safe. The snake represents the Jungian archetypal state of innocence, though there is an obvious menace inherent in the snake’s presence. The isolation and sense that something is “not right” is evocative of Andrew Wyeth’s “Christina’s World”. This painting is an ominous reminder of our own vulnerability.
Jocelyn Braxton Armstrong Westport, Connecticut www.jocelynbraxtonarmstrong.com
Missing Porcelain, mirrors, 2 cinderblocks, white paint 41 x 29 x 12 inches 2011 *
“More than 100 million women are missing from the world today. In places where girls have a deeply unequal status, they vanish.” Nicholas D. Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn, 2009, The Women’s Crusade, The New York Times Magazine, 8.23.09, page 33.
Gwynessa Balvanz San Francisco, California www.Gwynessa.com
Portraits of Tears Glue mixture mounted on Paper Installation, variable dimensions 2014
Gazing at myself, I was more aware of the redness of my nose and the puffiness in my eyes than what my tears looked like. The face had to go. It had too much mental baggage, and it diluted the conversation. Each portrait I made is from images of people experiencing tragedy. Sculpting the tears on a mannequinâ€™s head, and then their symbolic removal, I appreciated the language of these shapes. They obeyed contours and gravity during their journey down each face. I felt connected to the people whose sadness I sculpted. Their tears told me the same story as the tears in my mirror, so I gathered them around me and formed a support group.
Joanne Beaule Ruggles San Luis Obispo, California www.beaulerugglesgraphics.com
Scream V Acrylic paint on stretched canvas 12 x 12 x 2 inches 2004 *
“Scream V” (as the other 28 small paintings in this artist’s Stone of Hope series) is a sly, seductive work— beguiling, even beautiful—but not for the faint of heart or those seeking mindless decoration. Risking discomfort, Joanne Beaule Ruggles has created this collection to instigate much-needed introspection and public dialog at a time when there just may be too little of it occurring. This artist is not afraid to look at and give voice to despair, but what is ultimately uncovered and offered to her audience is HOPE.
Lorraine Bonner Oakland, California www.www.lorrainebonner.com
Trust Is Your Birthright Video 4 minutes 54 seconds 2014
The trail of suffering leads from child abuse to the largest political and ecological catastrophes. Looking for the root, I find trust, and trustworthiness. We are born trusting, expecting trustworthiness of others, but sometimes our trust is betrayed. The betrayer claims the white clay as privilege, I name that one â€œPerpetratorâ€?. The betrayed: we are many, we emerge from the black clay. Clay gives me voice. Video makes it portable.
Krista Cibis Portland, Oregon www.www.KristaCibis.com
mmHHmm Sequin, beads, canvas, metal leaf and thread 12 x 16 x 3 inches 2012
My work is based on the visual qualities of the written word and the complex cultural-context-based meanings in â€˜commonâ€™ language. As I have found the clarity of my voice, through a decade of experimentation, often a piece will have an entirely different meaning for a viewer serving to challenge my thoughts about language, culture and meaning. I chose a profoundly feminine material in the predominantly masculine world of contemporary art where the line between craft and fine art can be as thin as a needle and thread.
Sherri Cornett Billings, Montana www.sherricornett.com
Ancestresses & Wise Women and Conversations Among Women Documentary Video played on DVD player accompanied by information cards 5:38 looped 2014
Ancestresses & Wise Women is my response, as a political scientist/activist artist, to conversations I had with younger women, who did not know womenâ€™s history or their rights. Each of these roughly 7-foot sculptures, symbolic of women who mentored me, is accompanied by text that shares each womanâ€™s wisdom. Conversations Among Women, which I hold within the circle of these sculptures, have been powerful opportunities for women of all ages and backgrounds to share their thoughts and experiences.
Elena De La Ville Sarasota, Florida www.www.edelaville.com
TORSO/TREES Paper, ink, wax, graphite and pigment. 22 x 22 inches 2013
In the Torso series I deal with the change and transformation that occur in our bodies while looking at the ways we connect with the world at large, blurring the line between ourselves and the world around us. I photograph nudes, earth and rusted steel; I combine them by using layers of wax, paint, printed images, pigment, charcoal and rust. I add layers to the surface then scrape and texture to reveal what lies underneath. I work with heat, tools and fire.
Cat Del Buono Brooklyn, New York www.www.catdelbuono.com
Voices Digital photo frames with video and sound variable dimensions 2014 **
“Voices” literally gives survivors of domestic violence a voice, a chance to talk about their personal experience with abuse. Multiple monitors display lips of women speaking simultaneously, creating a symphony of voices. Only when viewers come closer and focus on an individual screen do they become aware of the installation’s topic. This movement functions as a call to action: as a society, we must not allow this epidemic and those who are affected by it to remain invisible; an inaudible crowd of statistics.
Donna Festa West Grove, Pennsylvania www.www.donnafesta.com
Green Sweater Oil on panel 4 x 4.5 inches 2013 **
The woman portrayed in “Green Sweater” has seen too much, felt too deeply and has closed her eyes to the world. She can’t bare anymore. Her burden is already far too heavy.
Veronique Gambier Brooklyn, New York www.veroniquegambier.com
Little Red Riding Hood - Grace II Acrylic on watercolor paper 42 x 42 inches 2014
I am inspired by the contradistinctive values of the medium or subject I am using and search for the tension within one color. Sensitive to oppositions and extremes, I learned to question the authenticity of what appears as face value and to look below the surface. Behind the story of Little Red Riding Hood, I am exploring the contradictory emotions that a maturing girl encounters on her journey to womanhood, and the intricate connection between the mother and the daughter in search of one single image to reveal both characters.
Joan Bemel Iron Moccasin Circle Pines, Minnesota www.mnartists.org/joanironmoccasin
Illuminate Digital art and hybrid technique. Pigment print on Hahnemuhle 31 x 25 inches 2014
In my newest work I am altering compositions that are from the art of the past, from museum pieces traditionally done by men, that I have reworked and transformed into strange new souls and environments. My intent is to empower the women by changing their gaze, form, framework, and even, sometimes, by complicating their gender. â€œIlluminateâ€? is a multi-layered work that begins with a fragment from The Braque Triptych by Rogier van der Weyden (1450). By incorporating found object scanography and digital imaging, I am clarifying a moment of transformation from passive and demure into enlightened, strong, and radiant.
Veronica Jaeger Pharr, Texas www.veronicajaeger.com
Mother Pencils on paper 24 x 30 inches 2014
My artwork is a reflection of the way I see humankind, its complexities, and meanings. Images start to form inspired by this combination of ideas, which were previously used in Ancient Greece with the caryatids, or columns shaped like women, as support of the buildings. Keeping in mind this concept I start to build my work, which unfold in the fusion of human and geometric explorations and its allegorical significances.
Judy Johnson-Williams Oakland, California www.www.judyjohnson-williams.com
An Illegal Tale Paper, ink 6 x 8 inches folded, ~10 feet unfolded 2008
I got to know several women from Central America who worked as nannies for my kidsâ€™ friends. Over the years, they shared many stories with me. These are their stories and they are all true stories, though not all parts happened to each woman. They were, and are, brave and smart and Iâ€™m the lucky one to be honored with their friendship.
Marky Kauffmann Milton, Massachusetts www.markykauffmannphotography.com
Lost Beauty: Margaret Acid Peel Archival pigment print 24 x 16 x 2 inches 2011
In contemporary Western culture, the desperate attempt to look young trumps all. For women, age is the enemy. We will succumb to the knife, the chemical, even the poison in an attempt to change what is inevitable. As an aging woman, I am fascinated, but also revolted by the steps we take to reverse the signs of age. The question I am asking is, what is lost? The answer is complicated. I believe the media’s idealized depiction of female physical beauty has a profound effect on a woman’s mind, body and soul. I believe what is lost is the story on every aging woman’s face of struggle, survival, fortitude, and triumph. These images began as bleached silver prints. I use the bleach symbolically. It is a metaphor for all the things women will do to prevent aging.
Meg Madison Los Angeles, California www.www.megmadison.com
Ruptured “ girls at eleven” no. 1 Silver gelatin print with linen thread 14 x 11 inches 2014
Ruptured: girls at eleven “go home and make work out of what is already in your studio”—Kim Abeles, Art & Activism Panel, 2011—With this direction I used my 1998 photo essay of “girls at eleven” as the basis for new work. The original series are photographs of girls near graduation from a (Los Angeles public) LAUSD elementary school. The girls, children still, have one foot on the playground, and one foot pointed toward middle school where their budding sexuality will define them. Each silver gelatin print that I printed in 1998 is punctured with holes through which linen thread is then hand stitched. The destruction of the print, and the addition of thread shifts the narrative to include what is not physically represented in the picture: this transitional moment in time, the rupture the girls’ lives are about to undergo, and the materials and process they will now use to piece together their futures and their pasts.
Jessica Maria Manley Mount Arlington, New Jersey www.www.behance.net/JessicaMariaManley
Swimming Digital C-Print 30 x 40 inches 2008
Throughout my photographic career I have always thought of my thesis as my voice, my way to express to the world how I felt in regards to the wrong doings of the media industry. We are pushing younger and younger girls into this unattainable standard of beauty. The media industry has a huge impact on the psyche of a developing mind ultimately damaging self esteem and self worth over the course of oneâ€™s life. I am a huge advocate of labeling photographs in magazines that have been altered by Photoshop.
Allison McElroy Jacksonville , Alabama www.allisonmcelroy.com
Time-Keeper Wasp nest, phone book yellow pages, felt 12 x 7 x 3 inches 2013 **
Allison McElroy is an artist who systematically observes the psychological cycle/existence of textâ€”written, found, and published. Personality is based on genetics overlaid by all that we have experienced. Through her recent body of text-based artwork McElroy is excavating her personal history for understanding. The work is process based: mantras written and whispered become a material remain of a mental state. The work consist of mixed media constructs and a collection of the objects themselves frozen in state of decomposition for audience viewing.
Freyda Miller Los Angeles, California www.www.freydamiller.com
Here Comes the Bride and Other Nightmares Fabric bound book 9 x 11 inches 2014
â€œHere Comes the Bride and Other Nightmaresâ€? is a collection of provocative, emotional and dream-like images compiled from my photographic works. The photographs are juxtaposed with quotes from historical and literary figures to examine the personal, social, political, spiritual and materialistic aspects of marriage. The work reflects the roles women play in society, highlighting unreal expectations, misconceptions, fairytale beliefs and surrounding myths. The Brides are a symbol of a fuller range of female consciousness.
Soubie Pizzuti Ray City, Georgia www.pizzutisculpture.com
Sold in Cambodia Paper, plaster 46 x 22 x 7.5 inches 2014
Child in Cambodia sold into human trafficking by her parents
Trix Rosen Jersey City , New Jersey www.trixrosen.com
CHANGED LANDSCAPES Silver gelatin print on floating museum wood box frame 72 x 48 inches 1998
CHANGED LANDSCAPES: Here is a woman who dares me to look deeply while exploring the physical and emotional contours of her new form after a double mastectomy. As she contemplates this defining moment of transfiguring change, she is quietly confident and optimistic, able to accept loss, transcend taboos and grow stronger through her experience. Even when bald, breast-less and scarred, she is, in her own eyes and through the lens of my camera, fearless and beautiful, essentially and eternally female.
Sondra Schwetman Arcata, California www.sondra-schwetman.com
Red Line of Fate Forton MG, silk, spool, steel variable dimensions 2014 *
We look to religion and the stars to help us understand a thing like fate. Many unconscious alliances were born from needs to understand our voice and guiding principles: What will happen to us? How are we to understand? The Japanese legend goes “ ... you and I are connect through the red line of fate …” Maybe we second-guess the meaning, thinking we understand this connection. That we can out-fox fate.
Cristina Velazquez Palo Alto, California www.cristinavelazquez.com
Repurposed Black VHS tape and knitting needles 12 inches x 32 feet 2014
Memories recorded yet forgotten on VHS film for later retrieval will no longer be visible through the TV screen. The VHS tape has now been treated as a long unending filament to be gathered with the careful motion of knitting needles. Knitted as infinitely black material it is transformed into a textured compositions. Over sized shawls transport us to the land of old women whose daily rituals of rosary praying send us back to centuries of devotion to a higher being.
Adriana Villagran San Francisco, California www.www.adrianavillagran.com
Sweet Tooth Oil on panel 16 x 20 inches 2014
“Sweet Tooth” is the result of a growing discomfort with being overtly sexualized in the eyes of strangers. I have realized that I have never been more aware of my sexual and physical identity than when I feel threatened by an aggressive male counterpart. I noticed that I when I walked in an area where someone ogled or threatened me in a sexual manner, my neck and shoulders would be raised and tense, and I imagined the knots in my muscles to be little pieces of candy, as if I was some fleshy form of a piñata.
Corinne Whitaker Palo Alto, California www.www.giraffe.com
Escape Plexiglas 24 x 24 inches 2014
The history of women in art is a history of silence. Our voices are passed over, our accomplishments ignored. Alive to beauties and tensions, the joyous rhythms of living and loving, our input is denigrated and our output limited. Where are we in biographies? In major museums? In university teachings? In record-shattering auction prices? We raise our voices in shared dismay, but fame is deaf, and fortune oblivious. Is there any escape from this blanket of silence? But we will not be silenced. We will be heard, and seen, and acknowledged. Because we must. Because we are worthy of admiration. Because we matter.
ONLINE GALLERY ARTISTS
Florence Alfano McEwin Green River, Wyoming www.florencealfanomcewin.com
It’s A Matter of Control 1/2 e.v. (Ad : American Gas Association, Ladies Home Journal 1953, Dollhouse Montogmery Ward Catalogue 1958) Photo intaglio, chine colle, digital prints ,collage, 17 x 25 inches, 2014 As maker, one works through head, heart and hands ,eventually leading to one’s statement—the art. The overall theme of my work might be said to celebrate femaleness. I approach the prints in a manner that is conscious of the materials and the process. In the making, the photo intaglios re-contextualize my pleasures of childhood play—paper dolls, books and puzzles. Ephemera of magazine imagery and story books are processed through the imagination and manipulated embedding the prints with visual innuendos and mixed metaphors referencing memory and rhymes. I approach all with a very serious devotion to the purity of play. 65
Salma Arastu Berkeley, California www.salmaarastu.com
My Destiny, Acrylics on Canvas, 52 x 80 inches, 2014 I find myself yearning to find infinite possibilities of the lyrical line on large canvases. I want to plunge myself into the pleasure of contemplating the abstract flow of the swelling lines, and form compositions of lines and fields within given space and enjoy the celebration of calligraphy through lyrical visions. I paint to express the prayers of my heart and intend for the energy of the calligraphy, powered by the positive messages from the texts, to reveal the joy and celebration that I experience while creating them. 66
Jackie Branson Pawling, New York, www.jsbranson.com
Box Used industrial circular saw blades & carpet, 8 x 10 x 10 inches, 2013 In both its imagery and materials, my work is an exploration of identity. By repurposing oriental rugs, I attempt to connect my Armenian heritage to an ever-evolving understanding of domesticity and self-awareness. My use of saw blades (and steel) functions as a kind of armor or defensive approach. By reimagining the nature of these rugs, as well as moving beyond them, I am exploring the relationship between approachability and intimidation while creating a flux between masculine and feminine, hard and soft. 67
Claire Breidenbach New York, New York www.clairebreidenbach.com
Untitled Wood, String, Nails, 85 x 48 inches, 2012 My art is an indirect self-portrait. I have an intuitive relationship with the economy of materials. Each medium possesses its own demeanor, its own logic that physically unfolds as my own internal vulnerabilities. This is the voice, the perspective that I portray and wish to evoke others to find the same subtle aspects within themselves. 68
Jane Caminos Watchung, New Jersey www.janecaminos.com
300/Hour Oil paint, colored pencil, fabric paint on linen, 18 x 24 inches, 2013 My goal as a narrative painter of women is to be a voice for transforming Victims to the Victorious. â€˜On Women Boundâ€™, a body of work containing 24 related paintings, seeks to expose violence against women and girls around the world, across all cultures. It also celebrates those brave women who are working to effect positive change in their own countries, cities, and towns by using their own ever louder voices to be heard, sometimes at the risk of death. 69
Agnes Carbrey Lexington, Virginia, firstname.lastname@example.org
Women Who Longed to Know Themselves Conte crayon, charcoal, linen, rabbit skin glue, 66 x 42 inches, 2014 Language is embedded in the human form: “I can no longer protect you from your feelings. You lick honey from a razor blade. No truth corresponds to your hope. The need to belong makes you cry. Just carry that burden, and use the anti-depressant of sex. The lasting memory of connection - is the moment of addiction. Your judgment fits too tightly. Find the fast, easy way that is pleasurable. Everyone is a pervert. Ce fut un privilège d'être négligés, même avec du sang dans les sous-vêtements. Tu étais trop jeune pour se souvenir ...” 70
Donna Catanzaro Windham, New Hampshire www.donnacat.com
If Women Ruled the World Digital Collage, 19 x 25 inches, 2007 I’m an NPR junkie. I’m addicted to news and at times it makes me angry and depressed. I imagined all the issues of the day as text, filling the atmosphere. But what if someone could clean it all up? I imagine a day when we’ll have enough women in power with enough suction to clean up all the atrocities in the world. 71
Sarah Ciampa Eugene, Oregon www.sarahciampa.com
Biological Clock Series: Egg & Nest Oil paint on panel , 16 x 20 inches, 2013 These paintings give voice to my experience as a woman and an artist regarding procreation. I use symbolic imagery of clocks, eggs, fruit, and other items to create an eloquent visual dialog about the experience of women navigating the intersections of their biology, their dreams, and society. To me, as a woman who has chosen not to procreate, these paintings illustrate my choices, my questions, and a part of my consciousness. By telling this part of my own story I feel I tell the story of many other women as well. 72
Karen Clark Los Angeles, California www.karenclarkstudio.com
the visitors (alice springs 1901) Limited Edition Print on Aluminum, 65 x 48 inches, 2014 These works are from a series where I have used faces of women taken over a hundred years ago by the first European photographers and have done a temporal-historica-remix; placing them situations where they confront cultures that have oppressed them at some point in their history. 73
Michele Colburn Washington, Dist of Columbia www.michelecolburnart.artspan.com
Squads Acrylic and house paint on diapers, 6 x 12 inches, 2011 My work is consistently concerned with social and political issues. My focus is on violence, militarism, and the indoctrination that occurs through commerce and advertising, through familial generations, or through the notion of patriotism. In most of my work, my hand is inserted into the machine made or readymade, creating interference with the mechanical or industrial. I often use references to domesticity such as the use of sewing or knitting to create my work, or in this case, house paints. As wars rage on miles away, their impact on our daily, domestic lives cannot be ignored. 74
Laura Collins Chicago, Illinois www.lauracollinsart.com
Mirror Collage, 8 x 5.5 inches, 2014 In “Mirror”, an image of two mouths is superimposed upon a woman observing her reflection. In this way, notions of second guessing your speech. We catch a moment of one’s self-reflection and criticism of the way they appear to others. Further, this work prods at our culture’s continued value of physical appearance over thoughtfulness. 75
Judy Cooperman Great Neck, New York www.judycooperman.com
Color My Hair 1; Color My Hair 2 Photographic/Digital Print, 13 x 24 inches, 2003 Women spend a great deal of time attempting to alter or recreate their identities, crossing over at times into obsession. Despite all of our gains we are still struggling with the beauty culture. My photos explore and challenge the illusions and realities women face in this regard. Seen through what is usually a private activity the images capture a moment in time and the reality of the experience for women. In this way the emphasis is no longer on the final product. Rather, we truly see what women do in the name of beauty. 76
Mary Coss Seattle, Washington www.marycoss.com
For Margaret Sangerâ€™s Faith Lost Wax Cast Bronze with Patina, 11 x 13 x 6 inches, 2012 Exactly 100 years after Margaret Sanger initiated what became Planned Parenthood, congress initiated an effort to limit birth control access. This unfortunate irony inspired this work. My use of bronze alludes to a long history of protective war implements, in particular, body armour. Using bronze to present intimate, seductive imagery creates a different context for the material. Stories emerge. I work at the intersection of the familiar and the uncomfortable to reframe and reconsider the issues of our cultural landscape. 77
Starr Davis Saratoga, California www.Starrdavisart.com
Molding My Story, Finding My Voice Book, marbled paper, cut and shaped chapters, scissors, mussel shell, 9 x 8.5 x 6.5 inches, 2001 In French, la moule, means both mold and mussel. I see myself coming forth from a shell of limitations free to voice and shape my life. Listening for the Voice Within I build iridescence. Attuned to the ebb and flow of life; I mold my story. 78
Elvira M. Dayel San Francisco, California www.elvira-artist.com
Triptych: SANDY HOOK ELEMENTARY SCHOOL SHOOTING, NEWTOWN, CONNECTICUT, JANUARY 2013. MOTHER (left); 27 PISTACHIOS (middle); THERE WERE 26 (right) Soft pastel on watercolor, 22 x 30 inches, 2013 This triptych commemorates those perished in the shooting which took place a more than two years ago, in January 2013. MOTHER (left) is sitting in the landscape; grass and earth partially cover her nudity and her lurking pregnant bump. She wears a white headscarf, it flows through all 3 works and envelops the sky completely making it also white. She looks on. 27 PISTACHIOS (middle) has 26 pistachios with nuts in them and one shell is empty—it’s the one without the substance—murderer of the 26 people (6 adults & 20 children). 79
Serena Depero New York, New York www.serenadepero.com
Bay Acrylic on canvas, 30 x 24 inches, 2014 In my paintings I have found my calling, my voice. Itâ€™s my way to experience the world, to make sense of it, to express myself. Although abstract, my work has references to the landscape and nature. I find inspiration in my surroundings, or from the memory of specific sensorial experiences and imagery. 80
Debra Dobkin Studio City, California www.art.debradobkin.com
Veiled #6 Oil and acrylic on canvas, 18.25 x 22.25 x 1.75 inches, 2014 This series was inspired by the documentary â€œSaving Faceâ€?, and by the stories and photos about the disfiguring acid attacks on women across the globe. It is difficult to view the effects of these violent acts but we must not look away. To date, there has been little justice for these women and these attacks continue. Because of the bravery of some of these victims and their lawyers, it has finally become a crime in India and Pakistan. However, the mind set is slow to change. In some small way, I can speak for them. 81
Kimberly Donlon Keansburg, New Jersey www.KimberlyDonlon.com
EMOTIONAL Oil, acrylic, wood, 4 x 4 feet, 2014 This body of work combines different inspirations that are fused together into one piece. Frequently, pop culture is referenced and satirical undertones are remixed into each composition. Expressive concepts of identity are exposed in various forms and mediums. Throughout each transition, the distinctive style of the artist remains in the work. An unconscious concentration blends unsaturated colors that flow in an aesthetically pleasing rhythm. Each piece is created with the sole intention of evoking a response in the viewer. 82
Michele Dragonetti New York, New York www.micheledragonetti.com
Scrim Veil Color Spot Photograph, 12 x 18 inches, 2013 This photo was taken at the reinstallation of Robert Irwin’s “Scrim Veil—Black Rectangle—Natural Light” at the Whitney. So much of this work appealed to me—the use of the texture of the ceiling and floor, the unique light of the room and geometry of its one window and light source, and the textures, lines and shadows created by the interaction of the installation pieces with the room itself. I found myself pulled into the piece as I shot from different perspectives, becoming as much a part of the work as the people in the photograph, variably absorbing or reflecting light, playing with the perception of light, shade, space and scale. 83
Patti Goldberg Ettinger Chappaqua, New York www.Patti.EttingerFineArts.com
Il Mercado/The Market Oil on linen, 40 x 30 x 2 inches, 2013 The women of Latin America speak to my heart. They quietly face the harsh realities of daily life with quiet dignity and a profusion of color. I was touched by the sense of community as I watched them making tortillas. In my work I wanted not just to remember them but to celebrate them. 84
Danielle Eubank Tujunga, California www.danielleeubankart.com
Mozambique III Oil on linen, 30 x 24 x 2 inches, 2010 I am making a statement about the unifying preciousness of water by documenting it all over the world through my paintings. I am painting all of the major bodies of water on Earth. Mozambique III bestrides the line between abstraction and representation. It helps tell a narrative of our Earth, a document of the formal and sensual qualities of water in all its permutations. 85
Pamela Flynn Lake Como, New Jersey www.pamelaflynnart.com
Night Cover Mixed media-oil, beads on canvas, 24 x 24 x 2 inches, 2012 My work explores the ability of art to evoke visual memories. My work explores the juxtaposition of the uncontrolled and the controlled in living. My work explores the blurring of boundaries between the serious and the trite. This process intense piece reflects a desire to make-a satisfaction from the contemplative and repetitive nature of craft. My work gives no answers. My voice is quiet, allowing the viewer to bring oneself to the work-to listen to oneself. To explore what is hidden in oneâ€™s darkness. 86
Veronique Gambier Brooklyn, New York www.veroniquegambier.com
Little Red Riding Hood - Untitled II Acrylic on watercolor paper, 42 x 42 inches, 2014 In this selection, I engage a dialogue between my two bodies of work, which are connected by a common idea: the unrevealed behind the visual and the narrative. Behind the story of the Little Red Riding Hood, I am exploring the contradictory emotions that a maturing girl encounters on her journey to womanhood. Behind the physicality of the frame of my abstract paintings, it is the white, window-like space that invites for the unknown. There lies an invitation to a new story. 87
Amy Gilvary Georgetown, Massachusetts www.VoicePix.com
The Gloria Steinem Digital Print on Acrylic, 8 x 16 inches, 2014 “Now the majority of people in this country know that if there is inequality it’s wrong, it’s unjust, that we’re all human beings, and the point is our individual talents. That’s a huge change.”—from a recording of Gloria Steinem. 88
Bernadette Malke Ginestet-Levine Oberlin, Ohio www.absolutearts.com/portfolios/m/malke
Lost in the storm Canvas, 30 x 30 inches, 2014 Three paintings made after my 33-year old sonâ€™s suicide. 89
Linda Gleitz Longmont, Colorado www.lindagleitzart.com
We Chose to Iowa to Get Married Because It Was Illegal in Colorado Oil on canvas, 36 x 36 inches, 2014 This is a painting of my friends BK and Lisa, they had to go to Iowa to get married because at the time same sex marriage was illegal in Colorado...I feel deeply that this issue needs a large voiceâ€?. Forever an optimist, I think we can change the world if we are loud enough and are voices are heard. 90
Maeve Grogan Bend, Oregon www.maevegrogan.com
Secret Pencil, collage, ink, oil paint, beeswax, metal leaf on panel, 9 x 12 inches, 2012 It is really dazzling for me to realize that there are billions of voices, each unique, each longing to be heard. I believe our voice is not just the sounds coming out of our mouth, but more. And when we speak with that voice, we do not give a part of ourselves, we give the whole. 91
Lucy Julia Hale Cave Spring , Georgia email@example.com
Mid-Century Wife Checkmated by Double Standard Paper, pen, pencil, 11 x 14 inches, 2013 Through my art method, surrealist representational collage, I try to clarify, illustrate, that is depose, an ethos, a deeper historical witness from a mass-produced interior or architectural design image. Loading the scene with collaged elaborations suggested by my subconscious can break open thematic fault lines, exposing the interior of the interior. The cultural strata illuminated include the context for stories of womenâ€™s endurance within the patriarchy. 92
Lucy Julia Hale Cave Spring , Georgia firstname.lastname@example.org
Warning: Modern Homes Unstable if Built on Sexist Debris Paper, 11 x 14 inches, 2014 Through my art method, surrealist representational collage, I try to clarify, illustrate, that is depose, an ethos, a deeper historical witness from a mass-produced interior or architectural design image. Loading the scene with collaged elaborations suggested by my subconscious can break open thematic fault lines, exposing the interior of the interior. The cultural strata illuminated include the context for stories of womenâ€™s endurance within the patriarchy. 93
Caroline Harman Newtown, Connecticut www.carolineharman.com
East of Eden Oil on canvas, 84 x 108 inches, 2008 These pieces image feelings of impotency in the face of violence and environmental degradation, as well as fear for the safety and survival of future generations. I am interested in asking questions about female strength and have subverted popular archetypal images of the feminine to acknowledge struggle and powerlessness at a time when existing political, social and environmental structures are breaking down all around us. These paintings offer the viewer very little security and instead strike a mood of baffling uncertainty. 94
Susan Harmon Sterling, Kansas www.susanharmon.org
she felt daughterless Mixed/canvas, 30 x 40 inches, 2014 Literature informs my work. This art work was inspired by the book, SOLD by Patricia McCormick. My focus and interest lay in emotional mark making. I do not wish to illustrate the important words which are the catalyst for me to create my art. I paint what I feel. This book tells the story of a young girl sold into the sex trade by her own father, in Nepal…and her journey to survive. The author’s words say it best, “I knew immediately that I wanted to do what no one else had done so far; tell this story” and I wanted to paint it! 95
Susan Hensel Minneapolis, Minnesota www.susanhenselprojects.com
I Dwell in Impossibility #1 Photo mounted on foamcore, 24 x 36 inches, 2014 I dwell in an aging body: emptied of fertility by circumstance and time, denied power through chance of birth and age, yet still impossibly fecund with possibility. I dwell in the creative impossible, choosing to depict the transgression of gender role interacting with age; to create a poetic representation of both diminishment and power, neither male nor female, impossibly pregnant...liminal in all possible ways. Neither one nor the other, neither yin nor yang. Giving voice to the culturally invisible and mute. 96
Maxine Hess Woodstock, Georgia www.maxinehess.com
To Be Seen and Not Heard Fabric, stitching, paper, paint, 19 x 17 inches, 2012 I am a story teller. Through each fabric collage and video I share the truth of my life’s experiences and the stories of other women to tell of pain, hope, and the human condition within the socio-political context of sexual violence, exploitation, and societal views of women. I seek to expose sexual violence, manipulation, exploitation and how even as young girls stereotypic behaviors are subtly enforced. My work is about rape and restriction and the mistaken concept of an “ideal woman.” 97
Martha Markline Hopkins Fairhope, Alabama www.mahopkins.blogspot.com
Pink Moire Acrylic on shaped canvas, 24 x 24 x 3 inches, 2013 Artists tend to hide and show expression at the same time. This is my expressive effort, with parts remaining mysterious. 98
Nancy Grace Horton Portsmouth, New Hampshire www.nancygracehorton.com
Pinned Down Archival pigment print, 17 x 17 inches, 30 x 30 inches, 2012 In the “Ms. Behavior” series, my photographs are investigations of female gender roles as influenced by American culture and mass media. This body of work is a 21st century extension of feminist concerns regarding the media’s portrayal of women. More specifically, I am interested in the explicit and implicit power relations that are constructed and maintained by mediatized systems of representation. Using narrative fragments that confound the conventions of popular culture, I explore the norms of female behavior and misbehavior. 99
Nancy Grace Horton Portsmouth, New Hampshire www.nancygracehorton.com
Hot Archival pigment print, 17 x 17 inches, 30 x 30 inches, 2011 In the “Ms. Behavior” series, my photographs are investigations of female gender roles as influenced by American culture and mass media. This body of work is a 21st century extension of feminist concerns regarding the media’s portrayal of women. More specifically, I am interested in the explicit and implicit power relations that are constructed and maintained by mediatized systems of representation. Using narrative fragments that confound the conventions of popular culture, I explore the norms of female behavior and misbehavior. 100
Jo Eun Huh Flushing, New York www.junehuh.com
Camouflage I Mixed media, 30 x 60 inches, 2014 My work is about creating space based on my experiences and afterimages. My imagination can sometimes create something that is totally different from reality. My particular form of expression shows itself in terms of unconscious fantasy and dreams. My experience at the shamanism ceremony had an effect on my work due to the physical pain and the spiritual relationship with the environment that was part of this process. 101
Olivia Hunter New York, New York www.oliviahunterphotography.com
Veil: Echoes from the Cave Photography, 20 x 22 inches, 2014 In my early teens, I was diagnosed with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. The attempt to explain my condition was like trying to explain sound to someone without ears. This image is part of a series that focuses on the invisible spaces that the mind creates based on collective and personal struggle. The work builds on the inability to see otherâ€™s thoughts thus creating a dialogue on human misunderstanding and truth. 102
Sandra Hunter Simi Valley, California www.sandrahunterportfolio.strikingly.com
onetwo Mixed media: x-ray overlaid with text on clear acrylic sheets, 12 x 18 inches, 2014 Womenâ€™s issues, in Egypt, Syria, Libya, Afghanistan, India, and America, regularly appear in my fiction writing. I also explore them in close-up digital photographs overlaid with poetic text. My intention is to break up the anticipation of receiving language, to have the viewer slow down and bring their own sensibility to the image. 103
Birgit Huttemann-Holz Grosse Pointe Park, Michigan www.brightstroke.com
The Truth Lies Elsewhere Encaustic on wood panel, 24 x 30 inches, 2013 Seeking a Lost Eden Being German, born 20 years after the VE in May 1945, I grew up with the question: How could this have happened, how can a whole nation have been engaged in the horrors of the second world war and the â€œThird Reichâ€?? The most important question: What would I have done? My voice seeks questions about the human condition, memory, myth, historical responsibility, language, pattern in our spiritual and cultural evolution. These are the threads that weave through my work, still trying to find truth for myself. 104
Polina Isurin Dublin, Ohio www.polinaisurin.com
Obelisk for The Future Archival inkjet photograph (documentation of installation), 16 x 24 inches, 2013 The memories imbued within monuments are as fluid as the memories we construct within personal identities. All those who encounter a monument become its performers—yet those who acknowledge its creation, take on the role of countering its memory. By collapsing histories, I connect my own personal memories to those that have been shared with me, such as a Soviet children’s game that teaches trust, where children bury their treasures into the ground and only share their secret spot with one friend—this story naturally emerged when I conceived the “Obelisk for the Future”. 105
Kristina Choe Jacinth Los Angeles, California www.kristinachoejacinth.com
When you have kids you will see Digital print, 21 x 21 inches, 2013 My autobiographical photo series, Dirty Laundry, is an airing of the sheets. Being half-Korean and half-CaucasianAmerican, I endured a unique experience. Having a muddled identity, I was never truly accepted by either side of my heritage, and in turn, I rejected who I was. As a half-Korean girl, I was taught to not speak out, but as an American, I fought my impulse to scream. The images of this series are surrealist recollections of my childhood as I struggled to find my place. The titles are words spoken by my Korean mother. 106
Kisha Johnson Brooklyn, New York www.kishaj.smugmug.com
Boardwalk Mermaid Front mounted on museum grade plexi, printed on metallic paper, 20 x 30 inches, 2014 Since an early age my life has centered around art and the drive to create. I believe the aesthetic experience occurs in a personal moment when the viewer sees art. I create images for that moment. I enjoy creating eyecatching pictures that blend vagueness and subtle details with sharpness, color and contrast. A large body of my work center around expressive sexuality and sensuality of a female body from a womanâ€™s perspective in a simplistic way however using unique compositions. 107
Lauren Kalman Providence, Rhode Island www.laurenkalman.com
But if the Crime is Beautiful... Altared (1) 3 inkjet prints, 28 x 56 inches, 2014 But if the Crime is Beautiful.... combines sculptural ornamentation, adornment, the body, and Modern furniture into images, objects and installations. The project responds to the architect Adolf Loosâ€™ 1910 lecture Ornament and Crime. Loos proposes that ornament is regressive, and that only degenerates are decorated (this includes women). The influence of Modernism permeates the contemporary built environment and therefore impacts our psychological and bodily relationship to space. 108
Anne Kantor Kellett New York, New York www.kantorkellett.com
â€˜Schreienâ€™ (Cry) Hydrocal, bronze patina, 8 x 18 x 12 inches, 2011 As the daughter of Holocaust survivors my art has been a safe place to escape and give physical expression to complex feelings of what is known and unknown. I search for a sensibility, which highlights women and the vulnerability of being. The underlying themes of the dark side of humanity, hope and surviving reoccur in my work. My work is also influenced by my travels to Rwanda, where I worked with widowed genocide survivors in the aftermath of 9/11. 109
Kharis Kennedy Christiansted, VI www.khariskennedy.com
White Collar Goes Black: The Little Black Suit (by Chanel) Oil mixed with glue on linen on board, 48 x 48 inches, 2014 This series questions the merit of medical organizations that send western doctors on missions...only to ultimately leave behind a populace who, via learned dependency, is ever more reliant on charity; I use fashion as a foil; its association with feminine frivolity allows me to infuse comedy into otherwise bleak situations. I inject couture into the surgical suite while appropriating the visual conventions of blackface performance as satirical means of lending voices to those whose stories would otherwise remain silent. 110
Zuzanna Kozlowska New York, New York www.iamzuz.com
April Bashi Oil and ink on silver canvas board, 32 x 40 inches The work is an exercise in being present and connected. Itâ€™s an intuitive and fluid process that comes from a meditative state of responding to the moment. I enjoy exploring the differences and similarities between things that can be felt, and I have come to respect the ability to see what I feel when I look at a work Iâ€™ve completed. These pieces reflect the meeting of someone special and the intensity of my emotions. 111
Susan Kraft Redwood City, California www.kraftart.com
Alice in Wonderland Oil on canvas , 20 x 16 inches, 2010 I used to feel satisfied with the progress we made. I was doing things women hadnâ€™t done before. I knew it was time. I strode through life sometime burning bridges. I told my daughter daily, when she grew up there was nothing in her way to do whatever she wanted - to follow her inner guidance. Then the war on women started and it crashed down on me. I am deeply disturbed for the state of women and I worry for my granddaughters. I lobby congress and rally to re-ignite ERA. Promises made decades ago, now look like lies. 112
Judi Krew Canton, Ohio www.judikrew.artspan.com
The Amazing Control Freak Acrylic on canvas, 36 x 24 inches, 2014 My paintings about women use humor, color and satire to comment about our roles within our families and within our society as a whole. This figure represents that person who insists on being the center of attention and in control of everyone else as she sees fit. Why are we always so afraid of that family member and her power? My work translates into imagery and symbolism what other people are often too afraid to say out loud in todayâ€™s PC world, with a smile of course. 113
Cynthia Lait Redmond, Washington www.cynthialait.com
Delightful Garment Acrylic on canvas over panel, 36 x 36 x 36 inches, 2010 In my paintings, the women appear silent. Their voices aren’t heard, but inside, the inner dialogue never ends. Do I look fat? I should not have eaten that… Did my daughter turn her homework in on time? Who’s taking my son to practice today? Did I miss out by not having children? Should I go back to work? Should I quit my job and stay home with my kids? Did someone take the dog out this afternoon? Why did I get married? Why didn’t I get married? Is this all there is? Am I living my best life? So many voices pushing and pulling. If you can quiet your mind for just a minute, you might discover a quiet whisper of love and encouragement. Listen. 114
Beth Lakamp Fenton, Missouri www.bettsvando.com
Donâ€™t Mind the Haters Oil on canvas, 24 x 18 inches, 2014 Women unafraid to stand alone to speak out and do what they feel is right. 115
Jude Lang Bala Cynwyd, Pennsylvania www.inliquid.org/complete-artist-list/lang-jude/
Codification of Sentiment, Fran Graphite on paper, 60 x 46 x 2 inches, 2011 This work shapes the familiar into the mysterious and the loved into unknown, strange memories. It gives weight to forgotten moments of domestic life. It borrows from communal as well as personal stories, distilled and frozen out of its narrative. It is essentially residue, tucked into a pocket of memory. Resonant not only because of shared cultural narratives but because extracted and apart it carries a strange energy in its awkwardness. 116
Sharon Leong San Francisco, California www.SharonLeong.com
Naked Man on My Bed Experimental Photography Using My Vagina as a Camera, 3 x 2 inches, 1998 My body has always been a mystery to me; i.e., does it have a mind of its own, how does it view the world, and to what degree does it control me? The need to seek an answer gained momentum after Iâ€™ve read Georges Batailleâ€™s Story of the Eye, which surreal portrayal of sexual aberrations and physical violations had directly influenced my decision to use my vagina as a camera in order to record, from its point of view, those events where my body is at times an instigator-participant and at times a voyeur. 117
Taylor Lindhorst Memphis, Tennessee email@example.com
Bound to a Landscape Recycled lath, found rope, 24 x 24 inches, 2014 As a woman, I have been told that there are many things I should be: soft, delicate, gentle, comforting. However throughout my life I have learned being a woman takes much more; women are just as strong and stable as men. To convey the dichotomy of ‘feminine’ and ‘masculine’ I feel within myself, I have created works that show the juxtaposition of soft and strong materials. I crochet pieces including metal and rope to show that while a woman may be soft and comforting, there is a strong and stable structure within her. 118
Rahshia Linendoll-Sawyer Sterling, Virginia www.rahshia.com
Some things I can’t explain 019 Digital photography, archival inkjet on silk, 48 x 72 inches, 2014 In the midst of life-changing events, questions inevitably arise: “Will things ever be normal again?” “When will things settle down?” These inquiries reflect a sense of disconnection from oneself and one’s environment. The cocoon of reality is broken. Once we glimpse our construct of reality, the urge to retreat is instinctual. Our natural sense of security has us believing that we are in control of our bodies and environment, and that entropy does not apply. 119
Shelley Lowell Danbury, Connecticut www.shelleylowell.com
New Dawn Oil, wax on gallery-wrapped canvas, 48 x 60 x 2 inches, 2013 My art is my voice. It is about human nature and humanityâ€™s volatile relationship with our planet. Through my paintings and their poems which are on my website, I give mother nature images and words so she can express her hopes, dreams, fears, desires and premonitions about the precarious situation facing our planetâ€™s survival. These works give nature human emotions. My art is intended as a wake-up call to encourage humanity to make choices to save itself along with all other species and our planet, and for humans to live in love and peace. 120
Shelley Lowell Danbury, Connecticut www.shelleylowell.com
Sisters Oil, wax on gallery-wrapped canvas, 48 x 60 inches, 2012 121
Hildy Maze East Hampton, New York www.hildymaze.com
hanging in the non-balance Oil on paper collage, 14 x 28 inches, 2013 All begins as thought then manifests as physical reality. We are not going to fix the world without healing the patterns of thought that are driving the world into its present state. As an artist, perhaps I can put these issues in a new light. To get us to think differently about what the issues are, what the solutions could be relating to ourselves and the earth. My work is an invitation to focus inwardly. Contemplation and awareness are powerful tools that can change society. Cultivating that awareness can enable a shift of view. 122
Kelsey McDonnell Buffalo, Wyoming www.kelseymcdonnell.com
Self Portrait 1 Acrylic on canvas, 24 x 36 inches, 2014 I wonder if she knows that I am always watching her. I see her struggle. I see her change. I have watched her shine and I have watched her hide. She is me. She is you. She is a great light and energy. 123
Erika McIlnay New Bedford , Illinois firstname.lastname@example.org
What We Hold Inside Aluminum cast handkerchiefs, woven paper, hog intestine, sewing table drawer, 12 x 4 x 12 inches, 2012 My current sculptural work is based on the play of personal strength and fragility, and how it is created to protect or interpret the objects held closest to us. Growing up on a farm, I always had strong female figures as a constant presence in my life, specifically my Mother and my Grandmother. It was through them I came to the revelation of fragility as strength, and it became a fascination. It was not to be discouraged, but to be seen as a virtue. I set out to explore this idea through ephemeral and structural materials. 124
Carol McIntyre Colorado Springs, Colorado www.carolamcintyre.com/viewcollection/9899
A Golden Gathering Watercolor, 19 x 26 inches, 1998 “A Golden Gathering” is one work in my series entitled, “No Time for Idle Hands,” which discloses the heartfelt stories of 19th-Century women of America’s west. Motivated by the lack of accurate visuals in our history books and museums, I sought to commemorate the unseen contributions these women made in the development of our country. I gave them a visual voice by choosing to use their hands to tell their stories about how they impacted their families, communities and our economy. 125
Susan Melly Los Angeles, California www.susanmelly.com
ON THE NEEDLE Acrylic, charcoal, tissue dress patterns on stretched canvas, 48 x 36 x 3 inches, 2014 My work examines dynamic relationships between female identity, industrial machine, sexuality and power. Women have a long history of interaction with the sewing machine: as a tool for earning income, creating decoration, providing protection, and as a symbol of gender identification. Today women are educated without a sewing requirement and are joining a workforce that may be virtual instead of physical. Referencing an icon and incorporating tissue dress patterns, I explore identity, male gaze and societal expectations. 126
Jaimee Newman Philadelphia, Pennsylvania www.jaimeenewman.com
DROP Acrylic on canvas with custom frame, 46 x 50 inches, 2014 My voice is a strong voice. It sings the songs of many women who often struggle with their own lives and identities. My work is a true reflection of the reality of being a woman. There is a beautiful, compelling woman in all of us. Underneath, she drowns in her quest for beauty while juggling work and family. My voice is that of every hard-working woman out there, who often feels or succumbs to pressure but always remains a perfect work of art. 127
Marie Noorani Richland, Washington www.marienoorani.com
Rejoined 1 Handmade paper, wax, ink, acrylic paint, rivets, 10 x 17 inches, 2014 I had a very difficult and painful experience when I was a young girl. For many years afterward, I felt broken and carried the pain like an invisible tattoo. Art offered me a way to heal: working with handmade paper as a medium, I am moved by both its vulnerability and resilience. As I create, destroy, and reassemble it, the paper tells my story of injury and restoration. The beauty of my art is not in making paper, but in putting it back together. 128
Petrea Noyes Brooks, Maine www.petreanoyes.com
Look Homeward Angel Canvas, pigment inkjet, acrylics, 30 x 30 x 2 inches, 2014 Women put up with more crap than any other living organism. 129
Petrea Noyes Brooks, Maine www.petreanoyes.com
Wailing Wall Canvas, pigment inkjet, acrylics, 30 x 30 x 2 inches, 2014 Women put up with more crap than any other living organism. 130
Nassim Nouri San Jose, California email@example.com
Todayâ€™s Teenager Digital photography, Size variable, 2014 Traveling in Northern Tanzania along the Great Rift Valley, we had spent 6 hours on dirt roads heading north to see the drying beds of Lake Natron. When we stopped to give some fruit and water to a few kids standing by the road, I was surprised to see a recently circumcised teenage Masai girl among them. Female circumcision is illegal in Tanzania, although still practiced, circumcised girls are hidden from public for 4-8 months while they heal and Costco wear their indicative dark garb and white clay face markings. She stood silently and stoically while her young brother collected the food. Her gaze was so resigned and so very haunting. 131
Arzu Ozkal San Diego, California www.contrary.info
Home Affairs #1 Screen print on paper. Edition of 20, 22 x 27 inches, 2013 Home Affairs is an ongoing project by Arzu Ozkal and Nanette Yannuzzi that intends to challenge of mainstream representation of motherhood in the 21st century. Through a series of prints “Home Affairs” traverses the domestic domain across different cultures and intend to capture the kind of challenges women go through at different ages—from domestic violence to educational rights. 132
Larna Pantrey-Mayer Brighton, United Kingdom www.lunkeymarna.tumblr.com
Her Feet Photograph, 23 x 33 inches, 2013 Usually my work is textile based. However, when I travel I like photograph. In this case I have used an image from my time doing voluntary work in Uganda. My work explores the idea of intent and accident. I like to create â€˜accidentalâ€™ portraits. Whilst I work hard to compose an image, I try to ensure I respect the individual I photograph. In Uganda I observed people getting very stressed when their portrait was taken. It was my responsibility to convey the environment/story without taking advantage of the subject. 133
Diane Pepe Philadelphia , Pennsylvania www.dianepepe.com
Reflection 2 Prints of drawings using Archival inks on 100% acid free paper, Plexiglas structures, 6 x 12 x 8 inches, 2014 Reflection series relates to women who attempt to reveal their inner selves, their true emotions and search for quiet light, air and beautyâ€”while working in the professional world. In order to be able to express these inner qualities, we search for ways to house them in containers or structures that hold still our emotions, keep them protected, yet enable us to reveal who we truly are and that softness, sensuality and vulnerability are actually strengths. When a shape or a piece of an image is used, then repeated, or reflected, it reinforces the idea, then shifts the concept ever so slightly so that perhaps it reveals an expanded meaning as one moves throughout the composition from the ground plane to the standing image to the back and then front. All aspects are explored in the multifaceted three-dimensional drawing/collage expressing the complexity of ourselves and the human spirit. 134
Jana C Perez Plano, Texas www.janacperez.com
Let Them Eat Cake Solvent transfer, collage and colored pencil on Arches paper, 26 x 20 inches, 2014 Creating fabricated fantastical worlds with skies filled with diamonds, floating purses, high heels, landscapes of giant lipsticks and more, this work gives voice to my reaction to a culture where female viewers are persuaded that something is wrong with them and can be fixed or remedied by the purchase of a product and where images of women have themselves become symbols of standards defining what is expected and accepted as â€œthe normâ€?. 135
Kim Pourciau Harvey, Louisiana www.facebook.com/kimpourciauart
The Possibility in Broken Dreams Lenox China, the armature is hardware cloth, fiberglass, and plaster cloth, 55 x 34 inches, 2014 How this dress came to be: While going through my divorce and packing to move out with my two kids a piece of my wedding china accidentally broke. I sat there holding the broken china reflecting on my life and marriage. I felt as broken as the china I was holding. I also felt an energy brewing beneath the pain. I knew that being broken sanctioned an opportunity to rebuild a life for myself and my kids that would not have been possible if I hadnâ€™t been broken. Broken brings the possibility to take on a new form, a better form. 136
Lori Remmel Tamaqua, Pennsylvania www.loriremmel.com
Matriarch Reflective metal print, 20 x 24 inches, 2013 My journey through motherhood has illuminated the primal voice inside. My â€œResistor/Capacitorâ€? Series is an illustrative narration, through collage and darkroom photography, of my inner dialogue and the disconnect between our inherent animal instincts and learned social niceties. In electric circuitry, a capacitor embraces and holds. A resistor introduces resistance into an electric circuit. To be a capacitor in my series means that animal instincts are validated by honoring them. 137
Susan Reynolds Hillsboro, New Mexico firstname.lastname@example.org
Against the Wall Canvas, acrylic paint, glazes, gels, digital image transfer, 16 x 20 inches, 2014 Many of my pieces tell the stories of ancestors by presenting facts, photos, documents, any available details of their lives on canvas, and artist books. “Against the Wall” is a deeply personal story. Being a born story teller I was inspired by the old saying, “A picture is worth a thousand words.” This is a mixed media piece built around a selfie. 138
Kasha Ritter Louisville, Kentucky www.kasharitter.com
Enough Acrylic ink on canvas, 36 x 36 inches, 2009 Hands. Hands that make things, reach out to create, or give birth to. Hands that cease moving only to interlace tightly when life has cracked underfoot. When things went no where near what I had planned though my intentions were solid and pure. When I am only able to gesture in inaudible, heavy sounds for now words scare me. Words like, “I am going to...I will do this....I am successful.” That thick voice. Like peanut butter on the roof of my mouth. Unable to speak. When life feels like mud. So thick I can’t get through it. When only tears will do. These are the days my hands that create, take hold of my head as if to hug it. To let it know it will be ok. And it always is. Till it’s not. 139
Kerstin Roolfs Brooklyn, New York www.kerstinroolfs.com
skull & self Oil, charcoal on canvas, 90 x 59 x 2 inches, Oil, charcoal on canvas, 2013 The series “love & sex I and II” deal with my own identity issues in the realm of love and sex. The painting “self & skull” is contextually linked to “love & sex I/II” but involves the element of mortality. It is so to speak a continuation of “love & sex I/II.” 140
Bonnie Root Los Angeles, California email@example.com
Sissy HD digital video, 0:22:37, 2012 “Sissy” is an intuitive linear narrative that focuses on the more subtle emotional shifts and struggles of the young female protagonist. Emotional urgency builds as Sissy attempts to survive after her mother turns her over to an unstable stage magician named Charlie. The film is inspired by the nuanced approach of Neo-realism, specifically films such as Fellini’s La Strada and Kelly Reichardt’s Wendy and Lucy, that focus on human struggle, the search for love, acceptance and the journey to find one’s voice in the world. 141
Phyllis Rosser New York, New York www.phyllisrosser.com
Riding the Waves Acrylic on wood, 40 x 50 x 10 inches, 2014 I found my voice by assembling large pieces of driftwood that I pick up on river banks and ocean shores. They become abstract sculptural expressions of my feelingsâ€”anger, solitude, joy. Using wood stripped bare of its bark or weathered flotsam, I connect with my inner life and express myself in a way thatâ€™s more powerful for me than words. Sometimes I merge my feelings with the dynamics of nature, the bruising wind or the roiling sea. Using the energy of the wood, I give myself permission to speak truthfully. 142
Emily Rutledge Chicago, Illinois www.emilyrutledge.com
Cracks in Our Masks Encaustic, spray paint, paint marker, and image transfer on cradled panel, 36 x 24 x 2 inches, 2013 Although I grew up in a small Southern town, I always felt most alive in a city. I am inspired by the haphazard visual fabric. Mangled handbills and posters form accidental collages. Tattered logos, text, and color collide. Marker tags and graffiti give a voice to those lacking one. Fragments of faces on torn scraps hint at the impermanence of life. In my work I have become interested in impermanence of street art reflects a similar impermanence in our lives. 143
Dixie Salazar Fresno, California www.dixiesalazar.com
DNA Analysis of a Good Girl’s Dream Painted collage on board, 29 x 26 inches, 2013 Finding my voice was difficult especially since I am from a mixed heritage (Spanish and Anglo) which created a sense of disparity that was hard to reconcile with the world around me and gave me a disconnected, ‘outsider’ sense of un-reality. Being an artist has helped me to integrate the parts of my identity at odds with each other. Dolls were important to me as a child and I continue to explore their importance as transitional affect images that symbolize my role as a woman and my place in culture and history. 144
Clara Saprasa Minneapolis, Minnesota www.clarasaprasa.com
Trapped Oil on canvas, 48 x 36 x 2 inches, 2013 The tree nymph is trapped in her tree by female role playing, fear, cultural expectations, and learned helplessness. She is alone in the cold and the snow. Her scream is not heard. 145
Tania Sen Warren, New Jersey www.taniasen.com
Us and Them Sculpture (china clay pots, feathers, paint), 4 x 20 x 6 inches, 2014 While subversion draws attention to a deficiency, observance reflects the acknowledgement of challenges and the understanding of hurdles overcome. Voices can be a cry for help or a silent nod of acknowledgement. Us and Them, capitalizes the warm and fuzzy teatime talks, the purpose of which is to keep it pleasant, much like the lyrics of the song: “Us, and them And after all we’re only ordinary men. Me and you God only knows it’s not what we would choose to do.” 146
Marlene Siff Westport, Connecticut www.marlenesiff.com
Truth, Politics, Lies Acrylic on Linen, 43 x 41 x 16 inches, 2011 I am concerned with communicating a sense of harmony, balance, order and spirituality. My paintings, works on paper, and sculpture depict imagery of personal events and psychological issues. They are expressed thru geometric shapes, color, light, space, texture, edges and movement… each inter playing with one another engaging the viewer to participate. Recently, I have embarked on a series of white paintings that abandon my signature bold palette. These paintings, from the “Elements of Peace” series, pay homage to people who have been affected by war. White is soft, quiet, spiritual, unadorned and full of infinite possibilities. My intention is to create an architectural space for rest retreat, connection, reflection and identification. 147
Amy Siqveland Minneapolis, Minnesota www.amysiqveland.com
Shopping Cart: Growing Up Female in Uzbekistan Digital Photography, 10 x 15 inches, 2014 Foreign journalists are not allowed into Uzbekistan and many independent journalists and peaceful opposition figures there have been tortured, imprisoned and â€˜forcibly disappeared.â€™ This piece is about growing up female under such circumstances: these particular women are pushing around an empty pram as a shopping cart because there is a huge pressure to have a family. 148
Bonnie J. Smith San Jose, California www.bonniejofiberarts.com
“Words, green” Textile, 26 x 33 inches, 2014 “Words,green©” What to say? What to do? What have we learned? Can we learn? Look at the past! Please look at the past! Please learn from the past! They worked so hard for us! Please learn from the past! Don’t make the work for nothing! Don’t let us slide back! Keep moving forward! Don’t forget the past! I these words came to me in a stream of thought one day after viewing some painful photographs of “First Wave Suffragettes” being courageous and bitterly abused. 149
Jodi Staniunas Hopper Erie, Pennsylvania www.willdesignforfood.net
Lover and A Fighter Digital photo print, 20.5 x 20.5 inches, 2013 I photograph images of women that are familiar but now disconcerting by the presence of the mask created from old wedding dresses. Computer composition may be used to render an intriguing image. The model, however, remains purposely un-retouched. My intention is to reconfigure wedding gowns into masks and costumes that speak to the “games” women unconsciously or consciously engage in with our identity. The masks relate to different head wear throughout the ages—the luchadora, the gladiator, the wrestler, the ninja, the submissive. They evoke a sense of mystery and strength when viewed. Many exhibits show the actual mask—mounted on glass head—with the photographic image. 150
Jodi Staniunas Hopper Erie, Pennsylvania www.willdesignforfood.net
Shooting at Castles in the Air Digital photo print, 39 x 27.5 inches, 2013 This series of works calls upon the mythology of the cowgirl and familiar terminology of cowboy (sic) culture. In this series, nine images pair a cowgirl of a certain age against a backdrop of cowboy lingo. The voice of the male cowboy is overwritten by the female actor leading to a different story being formed in the mind of the viewer. For example, stereotypes collide when the cowgirl in white posed against the large â€œWANTEDâ€? typography. Is she good or bad? How is she wanted? What does it mean to be wanted? Etc. 151
Natasha Stanton Sierraville, California firstname.lastname@example.org
Ecstatic Acrylic, ink on wood, 24 x 24 inches, 2014 As an artist I am able to express my wild woman spirit that was raised in a repressed upbringing. As a generational southern child the tamping down of my spirit was applied early. “The Ecstatic” painting I’m submitting is honoring those who forged a path for women to exude their sexuality. I know these women and they know me. My work is always about the spirit and I honor them by painting them. The paint, the ink, the knots and grain of the wood dictates the final outcome. 152
Julianne Sterling Albany, California www.jsterlingart.com
I’ll Wear You Graphite on paper, 83 x 60 inches, 2014 I paint about the realities, complexities and absurdities of life as a woman. With some bittersweet humor I explore the place where I rub up against the gender conditioning of my youth and the expectations of being a woman, wife and mother. My paintings are about little secrets women keep to themselves. As Cornelia Otis Skinner said “...Women keep a special corner of their hearts for sins they have never committed.” 153
Julianne Sterling Albany, California www.jsterlingart.com
Catch & Release Graphite on paper, 83 x 60 inches, 2014 I paint about the realities, complexities and absurdities of life as a woman. With some bittersweet humor I explore the place where I rub up against the gender conditioning of my youth and the expectations of being a woman, wife and mother. My paintings are about little secrets women keep to themselves. As Cornelia Otis Skinner said â€œ...Women keep a special corner of their hearts for sins they have never committed.â€? 154
Gail Stouffer Bulverde, Texas www.gailstouffer.com
Perfect Watercolor on paper, 16 x 20 inches, 2013 My work encompasses many aspects of the female experience. I strive to convey the struggle women face in navigating the lines between their external persona and their inner character. I explore the concept of stereotypical gender roles; those I chose to take on, and those that have been thrust upon me. My purpose is to produce socially conscious works that inform, educate, and increase awareness of these contradictions. 155
Mary Beth Swofford San Antonio, Texas email@example.com
Silent Drowning Mixed media, 12 x 12 inches, 2014 My work encompasses the idea of the feminine voice as tone, expression, assertion, and specifically as an articulation of vision and longing both heard and silent. The feminine voice express itself in the deep cry of the heart longing to communicate the truth; the truth of memory; the truth of pain; the truth of joy; the truth of spirit. The Feminine as artistic manifestation links the creative power of multi-layered story as expressions of roles we play in life innately soaring showing us the way. 156
Tanya Tewell Liberty, Tennessee www.tanyatewell.com
Center of the Hive Oil on wood, 36 x 48 inches, 2012 My paintings have always served as metaphors for the various voices of the female experience. I choose to paint strong, interesting women who somehow embody in their faces, bodies, and experiences a certain quality which often represents, for me, a symbolic and archetypal principle. In the selected paintings, there is a quality of listening to or perceiving some message or hidden meaning that is just on the edge of understanding. I want the viewer to be drawn into the mystery behind the personas in the paintings. 157
Nette Forne’ Thomas Maplewood, New Jersey www.nettefornethomas.com
Aunt Sarah, One Hundred Years Old And Still Smiling Graphite drawing overlaid with incised/engraved acetate, 36 x 22 x 2 inches, 2012 The impact of the feminine experience and the endurance of her commitment to embrace individuality traverses generations. Throughout the passage of time her strength and contributions give voice to progress and change. By incising lace like textures onto acetate and depicting images through this “lace”, I metaphorically allude to an engulfing quality which mirrors the ebb and flow of life’s involvements. Aunt Sarah’s smile is a testament to the fact that time has not diminished nor extinguished her voice. 158
Diana Tremaine Bozeman, Montana www.dianatremaine.com
Finding Her Place Oil on canvas , 48 x 48 x 2 inches, 2014 This painting is about releasing shame. It chronicles my journey to find peace with my own physical, emotional and spiritual self. I repainted â€œherâ€? many times, gradually releasing all preconceived expectations. Slowly she became universal and began to take on tremendous presence and truth. I let her tell me who she truly was and how best to express that. She is no single woman. She is every woman. She is perfect. She is imperfect. She is strong. She is vulnerable. She holds her place firmly but does not demand recognition. She is truth. 159
Michele Utley Voigt Malibu, California www.mauvisual.com
O Thus She Stood Oil on canvas, 72 x 48 x 2 inches, 2014 Peace is never static nor can it exist absent equality. â€œO Thus She Stoodâ€? depicts the constant movement (resolution) of women toward the resurrection of peace (equality). It demonstrates the rise and fall of peace, tranquility and non-violence through the movement of one female figure pushing herself up from the ground, rising to her feet, obtaining balance, standing in grace and lifting herself as if she herself experiences resurrection. The background plane is divided. Chilled abstracted geometrics demonstrate the energy and emotion of the standing. 160
Marcella Volini Baltimore, Maryland www.marcellavolini.com
Donâ€™t Be So Sensitive Cotton, found object, graphite, watercolor, gauche, 26 x 16.5 inches, 2014 Each piece of this ongoing series, i.e. each sheet of paper, cradles a unique found object in itâ€™s belly. Each found object embodies the theme of that piece, ranging from unequal wage to family gender dynamics. Each piece tells a trialing story of what it sometimes means to be a woman, but with a voice of frustration and animosity. This voice is not necessarily my own. However, as this struggle further embattles us all, perhaps (someday) it will be. 161
Marilyn Walter New York, New York www.marilynwalter.com
She Only Used Her voice Mixed media on panel board, 12 x 12 inches, 2014 Upon learning about Salwa Bugaighis’s assassination these two pieces have been the trigger for developing my new series. These works are personal reminders of how as a woman I aspire to continue being actively involved and advocating human rights with her passion and courage. As taken from her sister’s quote, ‘She only used her voice’, The New York Times article, written by Kareem Fahim and Suliman Ali Zway. 162
Margi Weir Detroit, Michigan firstname.lastname@example.org
I Codex II Black vinyl on wall, 56 x 48 inches, 2014 Using adhesive-backed vinyl, I group images of related things or repeated objects in stacked rows that suggest tapestries, rugs or Southwestern Pueblo pottery decoration. This stacking of unranked layers of mirrored imagery is a visual metaphor for the way that bits of information are thrown at us daily, with only occasional â€œin depth coverageâ€?. I piece together these fragments of imagery relating to a topic that is important to me such as ecology or politics with the hope that the viewer can make his/her associations. 163
Meghan Willis Brooklyn, New York www.tsurubride.com
Delicate Flower Embroidery, lace, leather, acrylic paint on linen, 10 x 10 inches, 2014 Flowers and lace, done in a traditional female medium. But I will not be confined to otherâ€™s impressions of feminine. Hard and soft. Delicate yet strong. There are no boundaries to what I can create. 164
Sheila Winner San Jose, California www.sheilawinner.com
Bound to Fuck Up Acrylic on wood, 14 x 11 inches, 2012 No longer free to be myself. Must conform to the norm, do what’s expected. Keep my mouth shut and perpetuate the façade. Don’t put anything in writing, white wash my thoughts because I’m bound to fuck up. 165
Joyce Wynes Davidson, North Carolina www.joycewynes.comwork
Not Listening to “NO” Anymore Paper Doll Acrylic, mixed media on canvas, 36 x 24 inches, 2014 “Not Listening to ‘No’ Paper Doll” says to the world I’m not listening to “NO” anymore about health choices, career choices, equal pay for equal work, taking domestic violence as a serious crime, and making being ‘female’ as an excuse for not hiring women or promoting them. The GOP and state legislatures have continuously over the last 6 years, declared war on women by limiting their choices. My figurative paintings gives voice to these issues and encourages females to be themselves rather than to “sew” together personalities to be someone they are not for the benefit of others. 166
Dara Herman Zierlein Belchertown, Massachusetts www.motherstime.blogspot.com
MEDIA WHORE Watercolor on Arches paper, 11 x 7.5 inches, 2006 Voices: As an American woman artist I feel the need to expose my own experiences being a women in my country. I am an artist, an educator and mother. I paint other womenâ€™s stories from around the world and share their brave triumphs in places where death could be the penalty to having an opinion, a voice. Women who do not have the same freedoms as me. Their voices need to be heard too. That inspires me to paint and live up to my responsibility of having the freedom to share my artist perspective. 167
GIRLS by Katana Ashby What are little girls made of? Sugar and spice, And everything nice. That's what little girls are made of. From the moment a girl is born she is set on the path of pink. That bright, ‘girly’, princess, baby, candy floss pink. The colour of the girls and all that it means to be a girl. A sweet treat for the eyes, covered in sparkly, frilly, lacey, ‘cute’ fabric designs. To be a girl dripping in the idea of pink! Little girls so sweet, packaged up in a silky PINK bow. The pink life is not just pink, it is princess, damsel, beauty, youth. Baby doll, fashion doll, dress me up I look like a doll. Passive dolls, passive looks. “I’ll dress you up to look like me” and now I want to look like you. Children learn through play and what do girls play? We go to the toy store to choose our toy’s, lets go to the girls bit the pink bit, that's our bit. I have a choice, what's my choice? A doll! Baby doll, fashion doll. Mother, model, carer, giver. Oh wait what about a cooker! But you CAN play with the ‘boy’ toys now… In pink. Now its a girls toy. Keep those gender binaries in check. Girl equals pink, Check! Pink scooter, pink bike, pink skates. Lets drive like a girl, run like a girl, fight like a girl. You fight like a girl. They said, insult, girl, weaker, lesser.
But girls have power, pink power, girl power, Em, erm, mmm powered? Your looks, your hook, lined and sunk. Go look, go back, to the pink aisle. Get the look, the book, it will tell you how to be a good girl. Remember the doll, your doll, you dressed up and made the star of your fantasy world, the passive doll, the mannequin. Look at the mannequin, a fashion doll, a lifestyle choice, a choice? Slim pickings, slim, slim, slim. That's the image, that pink image the one you’ve been fed… But don’t eat. These are the sizes. You have to fit the size. There's only one right size, they’ll show you what it is. Its the one on the tele, in the music video, on the front cover. The one that was on your pink princess duvet cover. 169
We are shown minimal coverage of options that should be endless. Women referred to as girls are minimally covered. Flesh, bodies, parts, fragments. Each measured to a bar set to unattainable perfection. But its fair game, expect it, there's a market for it. Its a market, sex sells, we sell, you buy. Sex, women, girls. Appealing to desire, whose desire? The heterosexual, traditional scene is set. We want to be ‘feminine’ attractive, to attract, that's human nature to attract. Not to be told what is attractive. You need to fit a mould, fit the mould, the mainstream pink cookie cutter mould. To be sweet; and spice and everything nice. Girl, a female child. We want to be called girl? Girl means young, youth is beauty. So were told. To be a youthful child, naive, vulnerable, needing to be looked after. Damsel. Not women, who is adult, in control. We have a choice. We’re told its a choice. It is not a choice! It will only be a choice, when we are shown, can have, and live all of the options. Just as we wish.
I do not remember learning how to read as a small child but now as an adult I feel that I am only just learning to speak. What struck me as I mulled over the idea of the Voices exhibit are the complexities of layers there are in being a contemporary conceptual female artist. I sit at my kitchen table with coffee and clementines along with the memory of my own lack of openness to my voice. It’s taken a decade or so to resolve how those words relate to me. There was a calcified construct in my mind of what an Artist was, looked like and did that I could not reconcile with what I felt in the deep hiding place of my bones. I had studied the traditional techniques with heartbreaking sincerity. I shared many a companionable rainy afternoon with the quietly tender, loudly opinionated and very funny intellectuals that make up the works of art in the Art Institute of Chicago. I tried so hard and for so long to fit myself into what I thought I “should” be as an Artist, ignoring that for me it could feel like an itchy ill-fitting sweater with a turtleneck. I think of, and undoubtedly mis-remember, a quote from Chekov’s play Uncle Vanya, where Vanya asks Sonya where is she in all this. I often wonder where was I in what I was making. I found myself in a long-haul internal battle royale with my hard-fisted gang of self-imposed artistic canons against a puny but wily little opponent in the form of an idea the size of a poppy seed. Once the little idea of the fundamentally conceptual nature of such mundane things as words slipped into my resistant brain I was a goner who did not yet know the battle was over. With that idea co-sprung the medium. A roustabout’s impatient challenge to use something so banal, so ridiculously shallow and yet somehow interestingly culturally weighted. What had the genie been keeping locked in that bottle of perceptions? Sequins. Even worse: the use of sequins and beads with a needle and thread as a legitimate medium. The great challenge became no longer boxing in the techniques and materials I had come to think of as crafts. I had to strip down my understanding of the materials to their fundamental natures of color, texture and reflectivity. Unlike the alphabet of my childhood, I very much remember my stumbling struggle and false starts to learn this, my visual lexicon. Now, after thousands of hours, thousands of yards of thread, tens of thousands of beads and hundreds of thousands of sequins, with surprisingly few bent and broken needles, I can finally speak with this, my voice. BY: Krista Cibis
“Voices” by Cat Del Buono I began this project as a reaction to being a witness to my own mother in a domestic violence situation. With a grant from Baang & Burne Contemporary, I started with interviews at a shelter in Miami where I heard disturbing stories of abuse but also of strength and courage. These women not only were able to leave their situations, which doesn’t happen as often as one thinks, but they also cared to reach out to other women in similar circumstances and let them know they can leave and they can survive. This impressed me and I was moved. How can anyone think of others when they’re being beaten, verbally abused, and made to feel worthless? The installation consists of 20 small video monitors that surround a gallery’s walls, encircling visitors and creating a symphony of unrecognizable voices. Only when one gets close to a monitor do they hear an individual’s personal story of abuse. The necessity of this movement on the part of viewers functions as a call to action: as a society, we must not allow the epidemic of domestic violence and those who are affected by it to remain invisible; an inaudible crowd of statistics. Instead, we must de-stigmatize domestic violence and empower survivors to break free from the cycle of abuse by valuing their individual histories and futures and giving them a voice. With the Voices project traveling to other cities, eyes and ears will be opened to this ongoing epidemic that is usually hidden or dismissed. But I believe real change will not happen until the portrayal of women on TV, film, and the media changes. Boys, girls, men, and women are constantly being fed a message that the female is inferior and nothing more than an object to please the man. If you look at movies, TV shows, magazines, advertisements, and especially video games, the message is clear and it starts young. Not only are most protagonists in films, TV, and books male – making male the “norm” and female the “deviation from the norm” but if there are female characters, they’re shown as sexualized props, insignificant, and one-dimensional. When something like the Bechdel Test is needed to give the bare minimum requirements for a film not to be gender biased, that’s a sign that we have a long way to go. Incidences like the video leak of Ray Rice punching his fiancé helped bring the topic into the mainstream, but not much has been done to influence change. My goal is to add more voices from different cities across America and exhibit the project as well as hold panel discussions in order to reach a wide audience and keep this discussion going until we have a solution.
Factory Days by Donna Festa The day after I graduated from high school in 1978, I began working in a glass factory in New Jersey in order to earn tuition money for college. It was through this experience that I learned much about life and formed my political and social views. The factories that I worked for during this time manufactured scientific laboratory glassware and perfume vials. Both of these factories were divided into two areas, the “hot” end and the “cool” end. I was one of the many women packers who quickly scooped up handfuls of hot glass, gave it a quick once over for flaws and dropped them into boxes. The belts ran 24 hours a day where three shifts of women stood for 8 hours catching, inspecting and packing endless amounts of glass products for $6.50 an hour. When I first walked into the large, loud, filthy room, a wall of heat and humidity hit me, then I saw the faces of the women working, aged well before their time. The summer months were brutal. It was not uncommon for the “cool” end to be 115 degrees. Large industrial fans blew hot air on us but we welcomed any relief available even if it was not relief at all. Not a summer has gone by since 1978 that I don’t think of the exhausted, sweat drenched women that still endure those brutal summers, catching endless glass vials and anxiously awaiting the next scheduled break that is way too far off when they can have a drink of water and splash some on their overheated faces. These were not weak women. The weak would not last very long. There was great strength and dignity in the faces I worked with every day, even the ones who appeared with black eyes and swollen faces from the brutality they endured at home the night before. Standing with and working next to these women for eight hours a day, I listened to their problems, heard stories about their lives that I wish I had never been privy to and could do nothing to help them except listen. I’ll never forget a young, pregnant woman working on the line with me on one of those hellish summer days who was so sick she could barely stand and do her job. She kept asking for a break to get some water or to please be allowed to go home but the woman who was our supervisor had no sympathy and refused to help her. In fact, she said that it was her own fault for getting pregnant while unmarried. If she left the line she would have been fired. I asked the supervisor, could she not call someone in from another shift to take her place but that would have required paying someone overtime and my request was refused. While this supervisor and others like her were cold, hardened, angry and unkind, some of the best people I have ever known worked in those factories. They had nothing, barely got by on the low wages they earned but would give you anything they had including a kind smile, a strong shoulder, a supportive nod, a quick joke to make you laugh even for a few seconds. But it was the faces that I’ll never forget with deep lines etched from worry, swollen, tired eyes, drooping skin fallen from youth that left too soon and the sadness, always the sadness. Those faces warned us young of the realities of life ahead. They were strong, weathered, beautiful and rich with the stories of experience. They will forever be with me and are a common thread through my work. Since then, I have been pro-union and what I call a Bernie Sanders socialist. 175
By: Amalie Flynn www.wifeandwar.wordpress.com
I call it a baby, even though it is just a sac, Even though that is what the doctor calls it, A sac, when she locates it on the grey screen, A tiny dot, with the ultrasound, After the bleeding starts, And I decide to go to the emergency room, But before they send me home to miscarry. And I call it a baby when I call you to tell you, To tell you how, how the baby is gone. And as I wait on the telephone line, waiting For someone I donâ€™t know to go and try to find you, Shouting out your name in a hallway of a boot camp, To find you, and I am waiting, listening to men walk by, Men in boots, who are wearing fatigues and carrying guns, Men like you, who are getting ready to go, Men you will risk your life with in Afghanistan. And I realize that you are gone too, That you are already gone.
The first time my husband said it, said The word divorce, I felt my marriage break, And I remember how on 9/11, just when I stopped running and started to walk, how I heard it, heard it behind me, a loud crack, The crack of metal breaking, and how I knew, I remember how I knew that the North Tower Was breaking, breaking in half and falling down. And I said to myself, as I started to run again, Said this is really happening, just like I am now, Like I am saying to myself now, as I stand here, By the door, waiting for him, my husband, a phone In my hand, because he told me this is not working, And how we need to talk, and how I am waiting, Like I waited all those months, for fifteen months While he was away at war, waiting for him to call, And come home or die, die even, and now, now I am Here again, standing in our living room alone, and Just waiting for him to come home again, and I am Wondering if he will say it again, that word, divorce, So I can feel it, feel our marriage crack, Crack completely in half and fall down.
Sisters Sisters so close Friends since birth How could I turn away? To you, it happened overnight For me, it happened over time You stole my share of sunlight blocking me with your leaves I accepted it You shoved my roots above ground so yours could grow deep and strong I accepted it You broke my branches to spread your limbs I accepted it You pushed my body aside so you could stand tall I accepted it You sent birds nesting in my leaves not to gift me but to live burden free I accepted it We were sisters I told myself You didn't mean it I told myself You loved me I overlooked until I could no longer It was always about you never about me I turned away not to hurt you but to love myself â€“Shelley Lowell 177
Reconciling Eating Disorders and Feminism By Larna Pantrey-Mayer I recently read an interesting article regarding 6 Ways to Reconcile Your Eating Disorder with Your Feminism. It was a very sweet and interesting read, nothing I didn’t already know, but it was a lovely and very kindly written article that reaffirmed my position. At this point I feel I need to give a disclosure – I am bulimic. I am 31 years old and I have had an eating disorder, in various guises, for the last 14 years of my life; and if I’m painfully honest, it’s not showing any signs of letting up anytime soon. I’ve always been very aware of the connotations of my eating disorder, both physically and on a social level. I‘ve always known my eating disorder is a coping mechanism, a form of punishment, an obsessive compulsion and related to control. I know I don’t make myself ill for the sole purpose of weight loss (nothing so simplistic) but the validation I feel from others’ praise for ‘improvements’ to my physical form on one end of the spectrum and concern when I am ‘too thin’ or taking my weight loss ‘too seriously’ on the other, go a long way to make me feel better – calmer. I’ve found, and still find, people’s comments a great consolation, although a comment about weight gain still shatters my world. It’s because of this that I find it impossible to reconcile my eating disorder and my political affiliation to feminism. Whilst my eating disorder is not fully rooted in in the aesthetic, the way I cope is entirely dependent upon how I look or how heavy I am – and that is a socially conditioned factor. All in all, I’m not ‘body-positive.’ I’m a feminist waving the flag for equal rights and demanding equal respect for my body when I myself don’t show it the respect it deserves. In addition, my illness is one of waste. Hundreds, even thousands, in my home country, the UK, live below the poverty line, and I waste vital food that could go to very good use elsewhere. So it’s not just my feminism I struggle to reconcile; it’s my politics and identity in general. The article mentioned above was very kind and very well meaning. The author, Melissa A. Fabello, went to great lengths to explain that you cannot control an eating disorder; it is a mental illness. She also used the article to encourage the idea that feminism is a diverse collection of individuals, not a singular party-line and conscientiousness – we’re all different, with our own quirks and struggles. After a number of very positive sentiments she ended with the all familiar Ghandi-style call to arms: ‘be the change you want to see,’ encouraging those who suffer to come forward and share their experiences. All of this I can get on board with; none of this advice came as a surprise to me. After 14 years, this is a perspective I’m all too familiar with; the ‘it’s not your fault’ line. I understand that, and I don’t believe it is my fault. I’m a culmination of my experiences, and my eating disorder is a part of that. However, it was the comments section of the article that piqued my interest; that and a large number of conversations I have overheard and been involved in at ‘Group’. Pretty much all discussions and comments downplayed the impact of societal factors and bodily expectations on the illness and individual. Nearly all concentrated 178
concentrated on the control issues: the ‘why’ people do it (trauma and struggles with change). All the comments on the article and in Group are very quick to downplay the aesthetic – the concept of women as aesthetic objects given value in accordance with their form. There was an irony to the qualification of ‘good’ eating disorder and ‘bad’ eating disorder. It was as though those with ‘good’ eating disorders – the ones with control issues, obsessive compulsions and traumas – had validation for their illness. Those whose eating disorders were more aesthetic based – people who were aware and who punished their bodies’ because their self-worth and value in society related to their physical appearance – were dismissed, even called the minority by a fair few. I do wonder how Shelia Jefferies, Susie Orbach and Naomi Wolf would have weighed in here. From my perspective the dismissal of weight loss and gain as superfluous to the ‘actual’ problem of eating disorders is counter-productive. At the end of the day, the media currently sees a woman’s body as an aesthetic object – I believe there’s little controversy surrounding this opinion within feminist spheres – and those media expectations warp both our self and societal worth. This is something Mythologies argues with force. To downplay this does a huge disservice to someone who suffers with an eating disorder; whether it’s the under-eater who needs approval of their appearance or acknowledgement of their plight, or the overeater who punishes themselves with food in an isolating fashion – physically so they cannot move, or emotionally where they fear going out due to judgements. These needs, wants and fears are all rooted in the perception of their physicality. I believe this to be supported by the documented rise in male eating disorders, and body and muscle dysmorphia, which coincide with ‘metrosexualism’ becoming mainstream and the rise of certain male-targeted advertising. On the National Eating Disorders site a number of excerpts call attention to the development of male eating disorders, e.g. ‘large scale surveys concluded that male body image concerns have dramatically increased over the past three decades from 15% to 43% of men being dissatisfied with their bodies; rates that are comparable to those found in women’ (Garner, 1997; Goldfield, Blouin, & Woodside, 2006; Schooler & Ward, 2006). These men, I’m sure, also have control issues, are dealing with trauma and have obsessive compulsive tendencies – the same as women who have similar forms of the illness. I’m also sure there is a fluctuating level of acceptability at play here: are men coming forward because the fight for gender equality is now enabling them to ask for help? Have the numbers always been this high? Or are men starting to become more susceptible to eating disorders as their bodies are becoming more of a divisive tool for advertising? I believe it’s the latter. Having spoken to men in eating disorder groups, some at my work who have issues, pressure surrounding physical appearance is something that is often raised. There is a level of expectation for their form to be ‘masculine’. Usually it is to do with ‘looking like you have it together’ – being overweight makes you appear unsuccessful to them, a comment often recited in the female groups. When dating an anorexic man many years ago I was aware of how paranoid he was about his physical form. 179
I understand this is all conjecture, and it’s not something that can be argued for or against without extensive further study into the field and time given to examine all contributing factors. To summarise, I want to impress the importance of not dismissing the aesthetic – specifically the way people look – on the psychological wellbeing of an individual, especially if it is counter to their politics. I know the way in which I punish myself has implications for my personal politics. I know that how I look bears way too much significance on my idea of self and worth. I know the importance I place upon the physical is directly related to how I have been sociologically conditioned. I care more about how I look because subconsciously I believe that’s all I am. If I attempt to study, and fail, I take it out on my physical self. If I try to achieve professionally, and fail, I take it out on my physical self. I do this because my body is the only thing I can punish and control, and if my brain isn’t going to do what I tell it, my body will. I know I am more than my body and face – but I still struggle to believe it. To dismiss this conditioning, that our appearance determines our ‘worth’, is dangerous for both men and women. It is counterproductive to the efforts of feminists who tirelessly campaign for the equal treatment and it ignores a rich history of academic study into the development of identity for all sexes and genders.
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Women of the World Unite by Trix Rosen From the earliest days of my career as a photographer, I have been drawn to document those moments in women's lives when they stand defiant, beautiful, strong and fearless in declaring their political rights as well as in re-defining their cultural and sexual representation. The morning of August 26, 1970 was such a moment. The date was chosen to mark the 50th anniversary of the passing of the 19th Amendment in 1920, the year the United States expanded the right to vote to include women. More than 20,000 women took to the streets of New York City that day, dividing up and marching down Fifth Ave, to the stock exchange at Wall Street and to the Statue of Liberty. This nearly forgotten demonstration, in defiance of the mayor of New York, was the largest march ever on behalf of women in the United States. I boarded the first ferry for Liberty Island along with dozens of women. We were carrying hidden banners and signs made the night before. From there the group split up, with some of the women climbing the hundreds of stairs up the Statue to unfurl their signs, while the rest of the activists, including feminist writer Kate Millet, waited on the ground below. Then, as banners unfurled from the top of the statue with the woman’s symbol and the hand-printed words “Women of the World Unite,” the group below broke out in chants — “Equal Rights for Women” and “A Woman’s Place is in the World.” I had brought my cameras, and my documentary images are perhaps the only visual record that exists of this historic demonstration. Soon, the Park Police Rangers arrived and told our group that we had to leave government property or we’d be arrested. How impassioned and fearless we were in those days; hoisting our banners for women’s equality at a national monument like the Statue of Liberty! But the fight for women’s rights and equality in the workplace is not over. In fact, now more than ever, women need to realize that what we have earned—economic opportunities, educational opportunities, job opportunities, reproductive rights and affordable healthcare – is in danger of being stripped away from us. I’m concerned that we are a Supreme Court justice or two away from turning back to a time when women “knew their place” and their place was not “in the world.” It is important to remember the 1970 Women’s Strike for Equality not as ancient history or nostalgia. This first major protest of the women’s movement ignited a fire. Congress passed a resolution the next year that August 26th would be declared “Woman’s Equality Day.” We must continue to act today with the same pride, courage and dedication in the unfinished fight for women’s rights. 181
“What to say about the Women’s Movement” by Bonnie J. Smith What to say? What to do? What have we learned? Can we learn? Look at the past! Please look at the past! Please learn from the past! They worked so hard for us! Please learn from the past! Don’t make the work for nothing! Don’t let us slide back! Keep moving forward! Don’t forget the past! I think we have forgotten the past! But we can change that, we can learn From the past and keep moving forward! It is just not for you, it is for all women! Keep moving forward! Please! Yes, we will keep moving forward. All of us will keep moving forward! We will not forget what they did for us! We must help all women where ever they may be! Yes, that is what we will do, We will keep moving forward! So maybe we have learned!
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Historically speaking it is a known fact that women artists faced multiple disadvantages that their male counterparts did not: lack of availability of resources (including training and education), lack of time (due to role as mother/home maker), social perceptions, etc. Today many of the physical limitations have been lessened or eliminated, but sadly for all some of the social perceptions have not. Themes of “grandiosity”—works that seek to shock, “intellectual” works that leave the viewer wondering if perhaps they are not smart enough to “get it”, works whose “bravado” alone impresses—remain the most highly valued, labelled by the powers that be as worthy of our highest esteem and awe. But what of work that doesn't point out injustices or cry out in anger? What of work that does not seek a false edge but rather feels it is enough to elevate awareness and feeling surrounding aspects of our world that are working? What of work that celebrates what is beautiful and powerful verses broken and wrong? This perspective, certainly not limited to but typically more female in nature, remains undervalued and under recognized, and leaves many women artists still at a disadvantage. I believe the purpose of art is to “wake up” those who view it – wake them up to truths, feelings and awareness's—that they may otherwise be missing or denying. Certainly protesting injustices is critical, and exploring our shared angst can bring connectedness, but what are we protesting for if not to save and honor what remains beautiful and vital to our spiritual wellness? It is a tragic loss that these more typically female themes and sensibilities remain marginalized by the world of “high” art. I believe Pete Seeger said it best when he said “the key to the future is finding the optimistic stories and letting them be known”. We owe it to the wellness of the world to hold artwork that celebrates what is beautiful in equal regard with work that points out the perverse. This decidedly more female vantage point, this lack of an edge, may be the very edge we need to lead us back to our humanity. BY: Diana Tremaine February 2015
Eco-logical-Fem by Cristina Velazquez Mother Earth, Goddess of Fertility, and Motherhood are among visual representations of planet Earth; feminine is most notably mentioned as synonym to the environment. The romanticized view of Mother Earth, which projects an image of a beautiful healthy world intertwined with the female silhouette. This visual representation leads to conflicted views of what Ecofeminism really addresses and of all its implications. Ecological-Feminism is a political critique on the exploitation of women, under patriarchal society it equates women to the earth as a resource that can be used at disposition. Ecofeminism addresses different issues in regards to women and land; it brings awareness, while highlighting artwork that serves as activism against capitalism and oppression. The rise of consumerism and capitalism in the nineteenth century; was attributed to the notion of mass production. More than ever what is really needed in order to live a healthy lifestyle without excess has escaped us, creating profitable business out of people’s wallets. The rise of industrialization created the illusion for carefree households with appliances that would do all the manual labor, therefore releasing the family unit to do leisure events. Commercialization seeks to gain traction under the ever-present idea of happiness with the acquisition of more and more things. To the masses it guarantees affluence with the presence of expensive items, an image attractive to those who seek individuality through the fake projected image of wealth. Culture is activated to those in affluent positions who are able to acquire fine art and attend the ballet and the opera. How do we make use of the resources that are needed to maintain the function and productivity of the world’s population? This poses a concern on sustainability, and how to maintain and protect the limited world’s assets. The ecosystem is in distress due to the pollutants that are injected into the soil, by way of agricultural pesticides, Hydraulic Fracturing, and oversight of waste disposal of chemical and toxic waste. The care for the environment is left to women/feminists. Ecofeminists groups fight not only for equality of the sexes but mostly to protect the ecosystem in which we all live. We are all equally responsible for maintaining our ecosystem clean and protected. If resources are allocated by those in power; these same individuals are to be held accountable for the misuse of these goods. Starting in the nineteenth century with the era of industrialization, women’s work took a turn for the worst. Once homemade goods became mass-produced women’s responsibilities changed; the household chores became a strict label for housewives. Women were burdened with maintaining the home but, most notably they were not paid wages for their hard work in the home as domestic laborers. “The contemporary women’s movement has represented housework as an essential ingredient of women’s oppression” Angela Davis. Ecofeminism has linked this struggle for women’s emancipation to the work against multi-nations industries. In a patriarchal society, women always at the service, whether ready or not, must clean up after men’s messes. Ecofeminism started as a movement in the 1970s, derived by the first time by the French writer Françoise d'Eaubonne through her book, Le Féminisme ou la Mort. This brought awareness on the militarization happening at that time and its impact on violence against the self and others, and ultimately against the earth. At the heart of this discourse is the continuous equality drawn between women and the world as a single unit. In recent times, Hydraulic Fracking happens to be one of the pressing issues surrounding the politics of the environment. Women and Native American people are most affected by mega oil companies; their practices have altered the natural state of resources. This has also posed the issue of transplanting individuals to remote the U.S. 184
locations, as their homes are grounds of high levels of oil deposits. The extraction of this resource has been most important in the economic welfare of this country—to gain independence of oil from foreign countries is key to the US. Women visual artists have pushed forward with the use of fine art to bring awareness to this significant problem as activism is an integral part of their creative process. A stronger connection to the world as agents of change, many contemporary artists have addressed the pressing issues surrounding ecological problems; Ester Hernandez, Favianna Rodriguez, and Ana Mendieta. Their feminist’ perspectives translate through their practice as their art provokes a much-needed transformation of the polluted environment. Ester Hernandez’ Sun Mad, was pivotal in reducing the consumption of grapes in the 1980’s when farm workers, especially women were exposed to the high levels of pesticides in the fields, causing birth defects. The original image was taken from the Sun Maid raisins box, juxtaposed with a skeleton to represent the many lives taken by the pesticides that were being used in the fields. The slogan reads: Sun Mad, raisins, unnaturally grown with insecticides, miticides, herbicides, and fungicides. A call to boycott the grape industry was effective with Hernandez’ artwork, which still today is a reminder of the many women who suffered the caustic effects of chemicals entering their systems and that of their unborn. Poster art’s distinct mission is to mobilize people to create change. Oakland based artist Favianna Rodriguez artwork exposes different subject matter such as immigration, war, and the mother’s of the femicide of Juarez. With the use of poster art, murals, and collective art making practices, Rodriguez is able to retell the story of many women who are trapped in the world of globalization. Through her social movement she is able to collaborate and educate on many pressing issues that surround and affect women not only nationally but globally, as she extends her practice to countries outside the U.S. Rodriguez accentuates what has been said for generations about women and their ability to give birth to children. The role of mother, giver of life, and caretaker for the innocent, perpetuates the view of motherhood as a fruitful, sentimentalized ideal for women. This promotes women as protectors of the world and the people who inhabit it. While images like this are effective in mobilizing people, the choice of media, and its fast production makes posters a tangible art form easily read by the masses. In understanding visuals and their power to provoke change, posters are an effective media, as it travels easily and now with the use of the internet; images are far more available to anybody with access to it. In contrast, Ana Mendieta, who creates “Land Art” through her Siluetas series, her purpose is to reclaim the ground from where she was displaced, her native Cuba. In her early artwork, Mendieta connected her being to the Earth. While on a visit to Oaxaca, Mexico, Mendieta created different artwork that celebrated environment. Through her different series, The Silueta, Volcano, and Body Tracks, she situated her body as a symbol and as a form in the soil. With her small excavation on mud and sand, she brings awareness to the environment in a way that had not been done; her female perspective on the magic of the landscape has separated her from other Land Art artists. The earth solidified her existence, as she sculpted herself in the environment: she called her work: “sculptures on landscapes.” Many of her work were exclusively devoted to exploring her surroundings through the use of the very same essence found in nature. The twigs, dirt, dry leaves, sand, rocks, were some of here materials; they would be re-claimed by the land in that transformative way earth regenerates itself. “Art is a material act of culture, but its greatest value is its spiritual role, and that it influences society, because it’s the greatest contribution to the intellectual and moral development of humanity that can be made.” Ana Mendieta. Ahead of her time, she introduces Ecofeminism; in the mid 1970s she portrayed this concept to the art world. 185
Visual artist continue to push for human rights and for the mobilization of people to reverse the drastic effects of pollution and earth’s degradation. Consumerism affects pollution levels in the world, because of the production processes that utilize oil as a based product. Many of the things done in advancement of economies are invasive, create damaging effects, and extract valuable supplies from the world, which result in the depletion of the earth’s wellbeing. Visual artists, who make a difference by empowering their community, use their artwork to motivate people into a greater discourse. Creating awareness and ensuring that people who are most affected have voice, to recognize that they too can be part of the change is in their artistic statement. Ecofeminism remains a misunderstood term to a great majority of people; their vision is the union of female form and planet earth. The lushness and greenest that resembles fertility can be attributed to the Venus of Willendorf. This is not the best depiction of the weight that this word transmits. Ecology and Feminists come together to address the many problems that plague the world through the hands of the leaders of the planet who seek advancement of wealth at any cost. The environment is very much in constant relation to the presence of women, as they are both seen as fertile land for men to grow objects and subjects out of them. Artwork produced by female visual artists who provoke change to the masses who come into contact with their images, seek to invest their creative power in pushing for awareness and solution building, as women and children’s well-being are at stake. The effort brought forth by Ecofeminism from its intersection in the mid1970s through the present has marked an important adage to the current state of the world, with the many important fights against inequality. Things that affect all people is the constant climate change, pollution, hate crimes against women, and many other, which it is attributed to the disrupted ecology. To find solutions is a pressing issue that affects the population of the world—as the environment’s wellbeing is heavily compromised. The same way we care for a newborn; the earth is of importance because this is where we all live, this is the place we call home. In staying connected to art in the different iterations, Land Art and Poster Art are similar in their effort to create agency by shedding light to a pulsing problem—the ecology as it relates to women in the world. Latin American artists are aware of the strong and overruling power of patriarchy on the land and its habitants. Through the artwork of these three women of color visual artists, Rodriguez, Hernandez, and Mendieta who are able to extrapolate the conflicting diminishing value of women paired to land politics; are able to make a case through their personal experiences and place value in fighting back. Feminists have been aggressively opening discourse to create change against Fracking synonymous of wealth, power, and pollution. Women in the world are seen as the cleaning crew for home and the environment, creating the entire world her domestic sphere. Women artists have been able to raise consciousness and attempt to sweep the trash and transform it into art. By holding close to their bodies, what it is most important to them, life and land; their presence is one with the earth not to be exploited and abused but to be a constant reminder that it is a source of energy.
Women’s Rights by: Dara Herman Zierlein American women have been fighting for their rights since 1840. Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony founded the National Women’s Suffrage Association. The Declaration of Sentiments was written in 1848 and their future work was laid out for them. That was the beginning of women's activism for generations to come. There were many sister associations, groups of women who came together from Boston to California fighting for basic rights, property ownership, women entering the workplace and most important the right to Vote. Today we witness women around the world trying to liberate themselves mostly through peaceful movements fighting for freedom. We have seen women in Afghanistan dare to give public speeches on women’s issues. We saw Pussy Riot go to jail and we have seen young girls in Nigeria kidnapped by Boku Harm. In India and the Congo women are prisoners of men and denied education, drinking water and basic needs. Women and children are being tortured, raped and humiliated trying to free themselves from their own families and cultures only to end up going to jail or dying. Here in the United States we are fighting for our rights too. We are still fighting for equal rights and equal pay in our work places .We need to keep fighting over abortion issues and many continue to die for that cause. We need to fight for women of color, Native Americans and immigrant women for the same rights. We need to keep fighting for victims of rape, military women fighting for our freedom, working mothers, raising families in a society that does not support motherhood. I am still proud to be “An American Woman”. I can write what I think, have an opinion and express it, too. I can paint what I feel. I can have as many children or none at all. I can marry a woman or a man or a transgender person. I can make an event or host a campaign with a political agenda. I can write my government and receive an answer back. I can get an education and use it. I can start my own business. I can get a divorce and an abortion (at least today) and I have the right to keep fighting for it. I imagine women from other countries must admire and desire our freedoms. As a woman first and an American second I feel and obligated to practice my rights - and you should too.
MaMa makes 77cents to Every Dollar Papa Makes
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Exhibition Catalog by Karen Gutfreund and UniteWomen.org hosted by the NAWA Gallery, NYC - April 2 - 30, 2015. Voices: An Artist’s Perspecti...
Published on Mar 12, 2015
Exhibition Catalog by Karen Gutfreund and UniteWomen.org hosted by the NAWA Gallery, NYC - April 2 - 30, 2015. Voices: An Artist’s Perspecti...