Carolee Schneemann: Kinetic Painting opens at MOMA

•October 23, 2017 • Leave a Comment

Posted by Dorothy Lander

Excerpted from Joyce Beckenstein’s interview with Carolee Schneemann in Hyperallergenic.   

This interview is a striking exemplar of the role of the female body in speaking truth to power.

Schneemann spoke with Joyce Beckenstein about her early struggles for recognition, the sensuous connections between the beautiful and the grotesque, and her enduring kinship with cats.

Carolee Schneemann received the Venice Biennale’s Golden Lion Award. She is also the subject of a major retrospective, Carolee Schneemann: Kinetic Painting, which will travel from the Museum der Moderne Salzburg to open at MoMA PS1 on October 22 — a level of recognition for which she has waited five decades.

A suspension from Bard College for painting herself nude (despite permission to pose nude for male students) seeded her sense of female empowerment. She went on to use her body as a medium to spring the female form from its frame, and to pursue explicit expressions of female sexuality. If her physical body was central to her project, it also often eclipsed her larger body of work.

Carolee Schneemann flesh art


A Witch on a Broomstick

•October 20, 2017 • Leave a Comment


Posted by Dorothy Lander

Extensive coverage of offensive costumes for Hallowe’en does not mention witch costumes.  Perhaps the witch on a broomstick is the original offensive costume.

Excerpt from Allison Meier

The First Known Depiction of a Witch on a Broomstick

In the 15th century, the image of the witch flying on a broomstick first appeared, its meaning laden with sexual and spiritual depravity.

Dylan Thuras at Atlas Obscura wrote that the “broom was a symbol of female domesticity, yet the broom was also phallic, so riding on one was a symbol of female sexuality, thus femininity and domesticity gone wild.”

Art has Shaped Ideals of Woman’sBeauty throughout History

•October 19, 2017 • Leave a Comment

Posted by Dorothy Lander

Ideals of Woman’s Beauty have changed throughout history, from Aphrodite of Knidos to Pamela Anderson to Serena Williams.  A telling reminder of the instability of representations within and across cultures.

An excerpt from:

What Art History Can Tell Us about Female Beauty Ideals


Aphrodite of Knidos

Serena Williams

Suzy Lake: ScotiaBank Photography Award at Ryerson Image Centre

•June 24, 2017 • Leave a Comment

Posted by Dorothy Lander

This exhibition celebrates the career of Canadian artist Suzy Lake, 2016 Scotiabank Photography Award winner, renowned internationally for her work on self-representation, female identity and the aging body. This survey of more than fifty objects, made between 1976 to 2014, brings focus to Lake’s artistic process and methodologies. Including never-before-seen photographs, maquettes and working materials, the exhibition examines this important artist’s career of experimentation and unwavering efforts through the years to push the boundaries of the photographic medium.

Suzy Lake RYERSON 2017


Suzy Lake was a participant at the 2009 Toronto Whistlestop, which Paula Cameron facilitated.  Suzy showed us some of the photographs of the unplucked woman’s face — her own — some of which are featured in her 2017 exhibition.  We learned about humour and aging from Suzy.

Union Station Toronto April 4 09


JGP videographer Toronto first 120309

Martha Wilson and the Franklin Furnace Archive in its 40th year

•April 16, 2017 • Leave a Comment

Posted by Dorothy Lander, excerpt from Hyperallergenic blog posting by Edward M. Gómez.

Of particular interest to Canadian readers, Martha Wilson made her mark in the avant-garde art scene in Nova Scotia in the 1970s.

“Wilson studied at a small college in Ohio and then earned a master’s degree in English literature at Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia. She stayed in Canada following her graduation and, in the early 1970s, taught English at the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design. With so-called second-wave feminism (which linked the social-cultural and political inequality of women) and the sexual revolution well under way, Wilson became inspired by the language-based conceptual art for which NSCAD had become a laboratory, with artists and critics associated with the new “idea art” passing through Halifax to present their work at the school.”

Martha Wilson Franklin Furnace Archive 40 years 1976

Franklin Furnace at 40: Still Radical After All These Years

For Martha Wilson and her collaborators at the Franklin Furnace Archive in New York, the avant-garde spirit is alive and well, and as relevant as ever.