Most Important Feminist Influences on Visual Art in the Last Half Century
WACK! Art and the Feminist Revolution Examines the International Foundations of Feminist-Inspired Art from 1965 to 1980
VANCOUVER, BC â€” WACK! Art and the Feminist Revolution takes over two floors of the Vancouver Art Gallery from October 4, 2008 to January 11, 2009, featuring the innovative and risk-taking work that emerged from the convergence of art and feminist thought in the late 1960s and 1970s. Widely acclaimed on its United States tour, the exhibition organized the by the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles is the first comprehensive, international museum survey illuminating the profound impact of feminism on art. The exhibition, which makes its Canadian premiere at the Vancouver Art Gallery, brings together the work of more than 120 artists from 22 countries, including the addition of Canadian works selected by Vancouver Art Gallery chief curator/associate director Daina Augaitis.
The themes that compose WACK!â€™s structure, provide a sense of the movementâ€™s history and reflect the lines in which women artists organized to maximize the impact of their work. Including the sections Goddess, Body Trauma, Autobiography, Body as Medium and Taped and Measured, the exhibition is divided into 18 thematic areas based on genre, medium, representation, formal concerns, collective aesthetic and political impulses. Rather than following a chronological sequence, WACK!â€™s thematic organization encourages a dialogue between individual works from a wide range of mediaâ€”including painting, sculpture, photography, film, video and performance art. Much of the artistsâ€™ imagery is unequivocally feminist, placing focus on the body and personal narratives, while others express themselves conceptually to explore such things as family histories and narratives of subjugation, and still others work in abstraction to obliquely explore ideas of gender.
The broad range of works and approaches assembled for WACK! highlight the strong sense of community that linked feminists and artists and illuminate the diversity and non-hierarchical nature of the movement. International in scope, the exhibition features artists from Canada, United States, Central and Eastern Europe, Latin America, Asia and Australia. Included are such groundbreaking artists as Marina Abramavic, Chantal Akerman, Eleanor Antin, Judith Baca, Louise Bourgeois, Judy Chicago, Lygia Clark, Kate Craig, Gathie Falk, Vera Frenkel, Yayoi Kusama, Suzy Lake, Liz Magor, Ana Mendieta, Yoko Ono, Ulrike Ottinger, Adrian Piper, Yvonne Rainer, Martha Rosler, Miriam Schapiro, Carolee Schneemann, Katharina Sieverding, Nancy Spero, Lisa Steele, Joyce Weiland and Hannah Wilke, among many others.