Like Petra Collins, Maggie Dunlap is another young Sagittarius whose work focuses on the exploration of girlhood with amazing results. Dunlap’s work is bold, true and sometimes dark – she does have an illustrated alphabet of serial killers after all. She is a huge Marilyn Manson fan and brings her love of horror and gore into some of her pieces while others are boldly feminist and unapologetic. She’s one of those artists that makes art out of just about anything and someone I recommend getting to know, if only on the internet. Karley Sciortino interviews her here for Slutever which is well worth reading. For me, I felt a lot of Dunlap’s answers were my inner thoughts.
Here is some of Maggie Dunlap‘s work I enjoyed, but you will find more on the web if you dare.
Valie Export’s photograph Action Pants: Genital Panic shows her sitting with genitals exposed while pointing a gun at the viewer. Export’s work draws attention to the ideas of phallic power and whether it truly comes from biology or can be attained otherwise. Export showcases her lack of penis by exposing her own vagina but reclaims the gun as her phallic object and power. It was rumoured that this photograph came after a live performance, where Export walked around people seated in a theatre, her vagina at their eye-level, and pointed a gun at them while offering sex until the theatre was empty. This imagery reminds me of the film Magic, Magic where, post-hypnotism, the female protagonist walks into the room of a man who has been sexually harassing her (verbally) and rubs her naked vagina in his face, all while being asleep. The woman has no recollection of events the next day and appears mortified when the man confronts her about it. This scene acts to remind us that such overt sexuality is not ‘acceptable’ in a woman with both male anger and female humiliation driving this. Export’s photograph works in the opposite way, purposefully pairing femininity with macho aggression (common in a lot of her work) to blur set gender boundaries.
Performance artist and photographer, Claire Doyle, recently paid homage to Export’s work in her performance piece Habitual Body Monitoring: The Costume. Doyle draws attention to female body hair through her performance which you can watch above. The acceptance and freedom of female body hair has been gaining support in recent years with other artists like Petra Collins and Rhiannon Scnhiederman springing to mind.
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Liv Thurley‘s artwork, Weapon, is to die for… and almost in the literal sense. When I first saw this image I wasn’t aware of the materials used and just thought they were gimmicky underwear with rubber bristles sticking out to represent pubic hair. I thought this was pretty cool and how funny it would be to flash people when wearing these knickers. Upon research and discovering the wonderful Liv Thurley, I was pretty happy to discover that these were hundreds (?) of tiny pins – sharp end sticking out. Thus the title, Weapon, becomes even more true. As a woman, I know that vaginas are very much weapons – commonly used against us, but also able to be used by women as personal power and influence. Thurley explains she overheard a group of boys talking about how they would never sleep with a woman if she had pubic hair. Soon after, this brutal creation was formed.
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“If i had my way i would move to the mountains tomorrow, buy a pet goat, and spend all my days painting pictures in a glass walled sunroom.” – Caitlin Shearer.
Caitlin Shearer is an artist from sunny Australia. Her work is really cool, both in style and subject matter – you can expect to see girls and plants and the occasional cat. I found some of her drawings on another website a few days ago which prompted me to google her. I was happy to find more of her work, with certain pieces having a bit more spunk as well as a feminist attitude. Really, I couldn’t have hoped for more! Her blog is filled with sketches, photographs and whimsical words (hence the pull-quote), making it one of those sites to linger on for hours while getting inspired. You can also buy limited edition prints here which I would definitely recommend doing.
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Who needs Three Wise Men when you can have Three Wise Women? In preparation for Christmas, here are some images that can help to get us into the season in a more contemporary fashion. Yeah, that’s right, with female power! I hope you are all looking forward to a great Christmas, whatever way you choose to celebrate! xx