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Feminist Art – The Female Voice of Evolution

December 16th, 2017 6:50 am

The History
During the early 1960s, most women artists, struggling to join the male dominated world of art, had to face severe discouragement for imparting feminist connotations in their works. Male lobby tried hard to de-gender their art so that their work could not be identified just visually as woman-made. Nude figures and erotic works were the key themes of the bereaved artists. The reason for the feminine flavor in the artworks is rooted to the gender oriented anxieties, some of which were sexual too. Feminist Art works exactly on these weak areas ailing the human female species. They focus on empowering women, especially in the purview of their reproductive acts and roles.

The Feminist Art insists on incorporating the artworks of all female artists, from all cultures of all periods, in the studies and exhibitions of art. In 1971, Linda Nicholin wrote a landmark article “Why have there been no great women artists?” This article gave remarkable drive to scholarships awarded to women artists. Overall, histories of several women artists were issued in 1970s, which benefitted many, yielding visibility to them since then.

US has been the frontrunner of the Feminist Art Movement. First Feminist Art Program was held in California, in 1970, with the Woman’s Building in Los Angeles serving as the active center during 1970s & 80s. Women’s Interart Center, founded in 1970s, in New York, is still operational, while Women’s Video Festival was also a parallel annual affair in the city. In 1996, the Institute for Contemporary Art (ICA) exhibited the works of 35 female artists of 30s, 70s, and 90s, while recently only Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA) covered those from the phase 1960-80.

The Artists
Cindy Sherman (Canadian-born 1954), Joyce Wieland (Canadian-born 1931), Frida Kahlo (American-born 1907), Artemisia Gentileschi (European-born 1593), Lilith Adler (American-born 1961), Candice Raquel Lee (American-born 1972), Jennifer Linton (Canadian-born 1968), Martha Rosler(American-born 1943), Rachel Stone (European-born 1976).

The Artworks
One of the most famous feminist piece is ‘The enforcement / prick’ (1996) by Lilith Adler, which comments on her own sexuality as a lesbian. Her works combined text and graphics of violence, sexuality, & religion. One of the well-known artists of the 20th century is Cindy Sherman, known for her untitled film stills, depicting herself dressed as a typical B-movie hero.

Encompassing all art forms, the Feminist Art Movement has immensely benefited Central & Eastern Europe, Asia, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and Latin America, apart from the United States of course!

Basis of Art and Art Medium

November 10th, 2017 6:46 am

Lots of artists seem to be born with the knowledge of how they will create, what tools they will use and every image or sculpture they will ever produce. While this may be true for some artists, not everyone is born with this knowledge and no one goes through out their life without being influenced in one direction or another. Many artists are first encouraged by their family, they may be given a camera or a box of finger paints. This influence continues on in schools where students are all encouraged to use chalk, pencils, markers and paint to create something using their imagination or even within the structural confines of a class project.

This is the basis of artistic discovery. Along with whatever the artist is born with, be it a voice or a drive to one art form or the other, it is their early childhood influences and experiences in combination with that special something that brings the artist to the tools of their artistry. Again, not everyone is born with this type of artistic drive or purpose and some may develop it throughout their life, perhaps even in their very late life. How do those people find their artistic purpose? Trial and error.

Start with what you are most interested in. If you have always wanted to work with your hands to create, then try clay. If you always wanted to smash and chip away at stone to find the form hidden within, then you will be a sculptor. The thing that must be remembered is start small, start cheap and you will find yourself a lot happier.

Art stores were not put on earth to prey on the eager minds of new artists, but it might almost seem that way. People that are new to creating often have such a gusto that they want to buy everything they possibly can within their decided upon art form. This mentality is completely discouraged. Start small, if you want to draw, you don’t need expensive sketchbooks or pencils quite yet. That can wait until later. A good idea for the artist just starting out is to create 10 works of art before ever buying anything. 10 works of art without buying a single material, be it stone or acrylic paints, may sound extreme, but it is completely feasible and will give you a good measure of your passion for the art form.

If you want to be a sculpture then before you buy a single block of marble you should start with potato or wood. This might sound strange, however, carving a shape out of a potato or bar of soap will not only give you some training for carving later, but it will also save you a lot of money. This is especially true if you find that you are not fond of the work later. Many new artists will rush right to the art store, buy a lot of materials and then put them in storage when they find that their zeal has waned. Start small, start cheap, but try; create and follow that passion.

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