“The fact that in only three of the 58 large-scale biennials examined here do women artists reach a 50 percent representation with men must invite further reflection on the current conditions under which women artists can express themselves in international forums and are able to realize their full potential as professionals.”
This is an interesting premise for a show: postcard reproductions of early Daguerreotypes of unidentified women, with texts about recognized women, given away for free. Increasing the visibility of women through this act of generosity/ distribution. More info at the artist’s site.
It’s on view at Jack Hanley Gallery in NYC. Nice to see non-commercial projects at a commercial gallery.
Looking back at 2013, I’m grateful for the generosity and passion of many people…
• the dedicated staff at arts organizations providing residencies and exhibition opportunities to artists like myself…
In 2014, I’m looking forward to…
• participating in the Bronx Museum of Art’s AIM program, and helping to organize mutual studio visits in the interim…
• launching a new version of my website…
• continuing to read and participate in book clubs about class, community, and engagement.
Via podcasts, I heard pertinent reminders about how our lives are subtly and not-so-subtlely shaped by bias. The speakers work within the entertainment industry, but seem to operate as formidable intellects and commentators on their own.
Field Negro Guide to Arts & Culture
Hosted by W. Kamau Bell and Vernon Reid, with producer Alex Thornton
Segment on Jeremy Lin/Linsanity and Asian American race and representation.
Episode 32, “Too Many Turnovers,” 2/20/12, 1:00:13-1:17:47
It should be obvious that the casual, semi-oblivious racism surrounding Linsanity, such as ESPN’s “Chink in the Armor” headline, is unacceptable. But Linsanity might be remembered more for people going temporarily insane—not for a point guard—but with race itself. In the recent hubbub, I encountered classic examples of blaming the victim, in which Asian Americans who objected to racist speech were called “sensitive” “pansies.” Bell and Reid help set the record straight.
W. Kamau Bell: It’s a referendum on how racist is our society, because there’s been all these stories of racism around Jeremy Lin, even people supporting him… The Knicks threw up some thing in Madison Square Garden the other night, where it was Lin’s head coming out of a fortune cookie.
Vernon Reid: Oh, no, they didn’t! … Why would— Who would— That’s just— That’s, like, the worst shit ever. What!?
VR [Commenting on a Black sports commentator’s racist tweet]: Anytime you have a group who dominates in a particular thing, if that dominance is threatened, the ugly comes out…. We [Black people] dominate in the NFL… and the NBA. But … now, a Jeremy Lin shows up, and all of the really, really unfortunate, baiting, racist, outsider stuff starts to come out…
WKB: …It’s people who don’t know. That’s how screwed up we are in America. People who are trying to celebrate him end up being racist.
WKB: …the headline was “Chink in the Armor.”
VR: You’re fucking kidding me!
WKB: …The thing is, they don’t think they’re being— …It’s like they just don’t even see it.
VR: …That’s just— That’s just— …for real? … It’s just appalling. Appalling, appalling, appalling.
Considering Reid’s typically judicious and erudite commentary on all matters political and social, his disbelief says it all for me.
This is a great interview, with many poignant moments. Streep is such a composed, accomplished actor, it was shocking to hear her reveal that she made herself more appealing to dates as a teen by withholding opinions. She also described finding her personality by attending a women’s college in the 1970s (I think we are all better for it). Echoing Bell’s comments above, there’s a litmus quality to Streep’s reflections—that it reveals something about progress—and the unreached potentials that remain.
Terry Gross quoted Streep’s commencement speech at Barnard in 2010:
The hardest thing in the world is to persuade a straight male audience to identify with a woman character. It’s easier for women, because we were brought up identifying with male characters in literature. It’s hard for straight boys to identify with Juliet or Wendy in Peter Pan. Whereas girls identify with Romeo or Peter Pan.
Meryl Streep: It became obvious to me that men don’t live through female characters.
Terry Gross: Do you think that women have that double consciousness?
MS: I think it has to do with very deep things. It might be that imagining yourself as a girl is a diminishment.
Heartbreaking. Streep goes on and says that she made movies for 30 years before ever hearing a man say, “I know how you felt.” More often, men’s favorite characters of Streep’s ouvre were of
a particular kind of very feminine, recessive kind of personality…. So they fell in love with her, but they didn’t feel the story through her body. It took, until The Devil Wears Prada, to play someone tough, who had to make hard decisions, who was running an organization,… for a certain kind of man to— empathize. That’s the word. Empathize.
This made me lament first, for my female actor friends, and second, for the diminished stories available to us all.
Britain and France-based artist Sharon Kivland spoke at the Whitworth Art Gallery’s Tuesday Talk lecture series today. She’s is a fierce intellect and flawless speaker with broad experiences to draw from as a researcher, curator and artist. Her practice is deep and vast, spanning psychoanalysis, language, typography and French revolutionary history. She characterizes her practice as one of precision, intellectual pretensions, and irony.
I really like Sharon Kivland’s Mon Abecedaire, a series of handkerchiefs embroidered with an alphabet of the artist’s personal flaws. The artist’s statement is really great too — light exposition conveying loads of irony. For pics and the statement, visit sharonkivland.com, click on exhibitions and scroll down.
I found Kivland’s broad experience and lecturing skill impressive and intimidating. Combined with other factors (low proportion of men in attendance, the fact that Kivland is the only female lecturer in the five-part series, and my observations of the local MA programs who’ve visited my studio — overwhelmingly female with only one or two men (sometimes including the TA), per class of 10+ students), I left with a nagging feeling about how much harder women have to work to gain respect and opportunities in the art world.