Current Exhibition in The Gallery
WEAR & TEAR: living woman
Showing through Thursday, March 31, 2016
The transformation of a woman's body and the struggle to adapt to the early stages of motherhood: a performance art piece featuring poetry and biology, fact and fantasy, dance and drama.
Two renditions, at 6:30pm and 8:00pm. In addition to the performance, the body of artwork WEAR & TEAR: living woman will be on view at the throughout the evening, and until the end of March. Gallery hours: tu/th 29pm; fri/sat 11-6pm
Contributions from: Jenny Bellik (vocal & script), Alexandra Peers (sound & set), Melissa Marie Harvey (art & set), and Carol L. Park, Doreen Rogers, Ola Soler (vocal), with thanks to Julianne Bellin and others for editorial support.
My artwork is about change and identity. For some time, I've been pondering what it means to be a woman. Defining gender can be very difficult--offensive, political, personal, elusive. While I was struggling with this concept, I came across an idea from Margaret Miles. She offers this thought has a side note, and rather hesitantly, but I've latched onto it because I think it holds truth.
"For women, the continuity of physical existence is secondary to the interruptions of that continuity caused by different physical conditions, which in turn carry different social identities and personal relationships. First menstruation, first sexual intercourse, childbearing, menopause...Change, the difference from one day to the next, the different body, perspective, and values of different times of life--these experiences of discontinuity, of being physically, mentally, and socially other than one was, characterize women's experience."
At the time I read this, my sister and her husband were preparing to have their first child. What Miles points out was going on in my sister's body--I was watching my sister, so close to me, go through such dramatic transformation. Wanting to understand more of what she was going through as a way of grappling with this notion of women's experience, I decided to create art about her journey.
The past two months I've been living with my sister. My conversations with her, as well as excerpts from her journal, and her poetry will be in this work. I am using clothes from her and other pregnant friends to create a temporary set for the work.