Sunday, August 31, 2008

One of My Favorites-Louise Bourgeois-Thanks Joanne!

"In the classic Mapplethorpe image of Louise Bourgeois, the artist is holding a giant plaster-and-latex penis under her arm like a brobdingnagian baguette. The irony is that if she had an actual penis, if she were Louis Bourgeois, she’d be bigger than Picasso. Bourgeois is an immense talent who has been making art for over 70 years. Her arc spans Surrealism, Modernism, Post-Minimalism, Feminism and Installation Art, and her oeuvre—essentially organic and increasingly narrative—includes work in wood, stone, metal, wax, resin, fabric and found (or chosen) objects." This is from the most recent post from Joanne Mattera's blog. Read the rest along with great images at Joanne's blog. I just wish I were in New York to see the exhibition.

I do love Louise Bourgeios's work and mind. It isn't just her ability to continue to work into late age that impresses me so. It is the strength of the work in her late years that is so amazing.

I am not sure Louise Bourgeios thinks of herself as a feminist as the rest of us do but she sure sets a good example of how to do it.

How appropriate to have this post snuggled right next to Joanne's sidebar post "OXYMORON OF THE DAY: . . . . . ANTI-CHOICE FEMINIST", her reaction to John McCain's VP pick. I love it!

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for the shout out, Gwen.

    Yes, Bourgeois is a towering talent. There is no doubt that the Women's Movement propelled her and her work into the spotlight in the Seventies and supported her expression.

    However her feminism is fluid and ambivalent. The entry for "Feminism" in the exhbition catalog consists of some seven pages of text. Here are two Bourgeois quotes, both from the essay "Is She? Or Isn't She?" by Elisabeth Lebovici in that section of the catalog:

    1. "I don't think there is a feminist esthetic. Loads of the emotions I express in my work are pre-gender. I was lucky enough to be brought up by my mother, who was a feminist, and to have married my husband, who was a feminist, and to have brought up boys who are feminists."

    Fair enough, But:

    2. "For a long time, the sexual aspect of my work was not openly admitted. People talked about eroticism and about my obsessions, but never discussed the phallic aspect. If they had done, I would have stopped doing it. Now, I can admit the imagery.It no longer embarrasses me."


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