Tag Archive | feminism

Merry Christmas

Virgin of Guadalupe

Wishing you all a safe and happy Christmas and festive season! (It’s already Christmas here in New Zealand! The sun is shining and it is super quiet and peaceful)

This is my ‘Virgin of Guadalupe’ artwork which seemed more than appropriate for this time of year.

Thanks for all your support. Stay cool, artful and open.

Maggie Dunlap

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.

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M3LL155X

The visual EP, M3LL155X, is a self-directed project form FKA twigs. I watched it today and really, really enjoyed it. I would recommend taking the time to clear you mind and really watch it. If anything, it gets better as it goes on. So sit back and immerse yourself in the work of an inspiring woman and a true creative.

If you want some more written content on the project, you check out this article at Dazed.

Sorry I have been absent lately. Life takes over. But I’m back now x

Move Monday: Chelsea Wolfe

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Chelsea Wolfe is the perfect addition to Move Monday. Her music is right up my alley and her hauntingly beautiful videos are the icing on the cake. Here’s Carrion Flowers to help you through your Monday. Enjoy.

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Move Monday: Young Girls, Move Monday: If OnlyMove Monday: 212,

May – Claire Doyle

Visual Female of the Month for May is the fearless feminist, Claire Doyle. Claire is a multi-faceted artist from England whose work looks at gender and the body. This month I got to know more about the eloquent and passionate woman that is Claire Doyle. And you can too.

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Genital Panic

valie export

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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weapon Rhiannon Schneiderman

Wonder

“You can’t let your curiosity die”

As The Visual Female developed I began including videos under the Move Monday section to embrace the moving image as well as the still. While those clips are highly driven by the visual – largely music videos – today I have something different (and amazing) to share. Wonder is a short documentary about last months Visual Female, Gina Martynova, directed by Jesse Brass as part of his ‘Making Art’ series.

Wonder is put together really well, allowing viewers to form a connection with Gina and gain more understanding of what she (and Starry) believe in. For Gina it is all about curiosity, the beauty in the fact that there is always more to discover in this world. You’ll have to watch to learn about Starry, but she seems pretty cool too. Wonder shows us Gina in her work and living space as well as beautiful close-ups of her art, something you can’t experience by simply seeing her work on the internet. This tasteful documentary is definitely worth a watch. And the best bit, Jesse has already made a bunch of films about other artists, some of which I am going to get stuck into now – the pink hues of Jen Mann are calling me in. So make a cup of tea (even if it’s hot outside) and relax while you get to know a few of the many amazing artists in the world bringing us joy through beauty.

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Swallowed

Here’s another poem I wrote inspired by a piece of art.

Swallowed.

When I met the lion
he told me it was love
so I allowed him
to swallow me
whole.

Inside the lion
there was little to do.
And so his ribs
became my cage
and the lion
my master.

It is lonely at his zoo.

Ana-Teresa-Barboza

This image is by Ana Teresa Barboza. I also did a This vs. That on this image last year which you can take a look at here.

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Move Monday: Bitches Brew

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Today’s Move Monday is a little hit and miss for me but I wanted to share it anyway. I’m more in love with the video than the song itself, although it does grow on me – and isn’t bad to begin with at all. What bothers me the most is the band shots. You know, silhouetted men have never really got me going. So in an ideal world they wouldn’t be there, but then again it is their song so they have all the right in the world to be there. The stunning women, grungy imagery, fun rituals and skipping (you have the love the skipping) are the parts that make this video worthwhile to me. In fact, they are so superb that I had to share it here, so if you can overlook the men take a look below.

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Move Monday: Young Girls, Move Monday: If OnlyMove Monday: 212,

Weapon

Liv Thurleys 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.

weapon

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Move Monday: Young Girls

I just adore this music video by Princess Nokia. Not only is the song really cool but the video is incredibly powerful and a good reminder about the honest connection and respect between women and nature. Living in my technology driven world it is a refreshing change to see women celebrating life with each other and our Mother Earth. Listen to the lyrics because they are really good. And then maybe watch it again. Beauty and power. x

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Move Monday: If OnlyMove Monday: 212Move Monday: Games for Girls,

Caitlin Shearer

“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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January – Janine Shroff

Visual Female of the Month is back for 2015. To kick off the year I talk with the super talented Janine Shroff. Her amazing artwork and illustration is packed with opinion, politics, humour and colour. So take a look and enjoy this thought-provoking interview here.

Photo by Nikhil Hemranjani

Three Wise Women

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

Julie Filipenko

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Mab Graves

mab graves runaways

Anna McKay

Trinity

Pierre Mornet

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mark ryden anna-dittmann.jpeg.pagespeed.ic.6fbP37Rc0V Like sniffing dogs web

Self-Centred

It has been a while between posts, but I’m using my 26th birthday as an excuse. The celebrations kicked off on Saturday with a birthday brunch with my family, followed by a sunny day with friends and bubbles. For my actual birthday on Monday  I had a combination of work, short-story editing, beer, amazing food, more bubbles and great company. Considering it has been all about me, I thought I would showcase some of my artwork this week. It’s been a while since I’ve showcased my personal work so here’s a look at a range of my more recent work. To see more you can check out my website or follow me on Facebook for regular updates. That would make me happy. Peace and Love xx

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August – Kaethe Butcher

Visual Female for the month of August is up on this fine Friday (yay, weekend!). Super-talented illustrator, Kaethe Butcher, is answering my questions for August. Her black and white illustrations are compelling, erotic and well worth checking out. Plus, it’s a great opportunity to get to know Butcher and her inspirations a little bit better. You can check out the interview here.

me cruella de ville

With Words

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So today I am sharing something a little different to my usual visual-based posts. Lately I have found some really good, really fierce poetry that looks at the portrayal of women and race in popular culture. Of course we all know how skewed the world is and that mainstream music, film and literature often adds fuel to the fire – the white male view-point reigning supreme. These two talented women use their words to reevaluate what so many people just accept as normal. I’ve added a few images that I feel work with the essence of this post and, well, just because I am The Visual Female after all. The above image is by Pieter Hugo (which I got the privilege of seeing at an exhibition a few years ago), and the other two are taken from new wave classic Pierrot Le Fou (1965). Please take the time to watch both clips, they are very powerful and worthwhile.

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The mainstream view about these issues….

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What our response should look like

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In Nature

Brett Manning is an American artist with a diverse portfolio. I originally discovered her illustrations and through following her on social media was fortunate enough to see these stunning photographs. I love the vibe of the work, very feminine and empowered with a touch of witch energy (which works with Brett being a Scorpio – born on spooky Halloween in fact). A lot of her artwork makes reference to this, with cats, ghosts, witches and broomsticks scattered throughout rather lightly toned illustrations. You will also find ufos, aliens and cakes. The result is fun, quirky artwork with a little mystery and intrigue. However, with Brett’s photography, there is a darker, more feminine and powerful energy. Do check out her portfolio to see all her amazing work.

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Picture-69 bent over

July – Elia Fernandez

Visual Female for the month of July is up today for your viewing pleasure. Elia Fernandez is a talented artist with a very interesting mind! Her emotive, soulful art matches her outlook on life which is all about making the most of the world around us. Have a read and deepen your knowledge like Elia would want you to do!

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Francesca Woodman

I love the connections between these photographs by Francesca Woodman. Both are feminist pieces (and obviously stunning!) in my opinion. The first positions Woodman’s girl-like face and ribbon with a more developed body through breasts and underarm hair. I really dig this part of the image because it is really quite subtle but entirely transforms the image from look at me to what are you looking at? So much strength and power as woman is conveyed.

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The second image is cropped in a similar way and while the subject matter is also similar it expresses another concept. The idea of submission and rape come to my mind. Woodman’s face and body language retreat, her arms up and blank face saying ‘take me’, ‘do what you want with me’. Her hands scream I am innocent, don’t shoot through a familiar gesture, but the painted hand on Woodman’s chest indicates violation, unacknowledged hands. We can tell it is her hand that she has painted around, but ideas of other hands touching her come to mind. Combined with her submissive position, and the police aspects (hands up, painted body outline from crime scenes) this adds a sinister aspect which really makes the image so amazing. Francesca Woodman, you were one talented photographer. Thank you for sharing yourself with us, we are lucky.

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June – Natalie Foss

Visual Female for the month of June is up today for your viewing pleasure. This month I feature the super-talented Natalie Foss. An amazing illustrator from Norway, Natalie’s work is unique and evocative. Check out her work and the interview here. You won’t regret it! xx

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Rhiannon Schneiderman

I found Rhiannon Schneiderman‘s ‘Lady Mane’ series on The Ardorous (curated by Petra Collins) and fell in love with both the concept and execution. These amazing self-portraits reclaim pubic hair in a refreshing, beautiful manner. As women have fallen out with pubic hair, choosing to wax, shave, pluck and attempt anything for it to go away, I am happy to see a generation returning affection to the bush. Schneiderman’s series is all about empowerment, reclaiming femininity as a woman rather than adhering to male-approved versions. The series is powerful and highlights the hilarity of the modern-day emphasis given to make ones genitals fashionable. Each ‘lady mane’ is different and reminds us that, yes, it is okay to do whatever we want with out pubic hair. It is ours, nobody else should get a say. Here’s my four favourite pieces from the eight-part series. Enjoy x

Schneiderman2Rhiannon SchneidermanSchneiderman7 Schneiderman3

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Move Monday: Pussy Power

I love Petra Collins. Oh my god. Almost everything she does seems rather perfect to me. At only 21 I am impressed and inspired. Unapologetic in her feminism, Petra is getting noticed for who she is and the art she creates. Her recent t-shirt for American Apparel created some attention (keywords: vagina, masturbation, menstruation) but even more fascinating was the response to an image she posted on Instagram. Reported and banned, the image was of Petra wearing underwear which happened to reveal pubic hair. Despite bikini clad women swarming the internet, the fact Petra was not groomed to society’s standards caused the image to be deemed offensive. Censorship at its baddest. You can see the image and read Petra’s essay on the matter Censorship and The Female Body

For Move Monday, however, I have chosen a short video by Petra (with the help of the hilarious Karley Sciortino of Slutever) titled ‘Pussy Power’. Quite fitting in name, the video is a visual treat that allows our minds to do what they should and think.

The YouTube intro reads:

It is the year 2020 and women have lost the right to their bodies completely.In this tale of sweet revenge, a cult of courageous women go to extremes to take back what is rightfully theirs.

P.S. Isn’t the music by Prince Innocence amazing?

 

May – Jessica Singh

Visual Female for the month of May is up today for your viewing pleasure. Jessica Singh is a super talented illustrator with a great mind and lots of interesting things to say! Not only is the interview worthwhile, but all the links Jessica wanted to share are also pretty rad (I should know, I have been browsing them and getting into a link-click web of inspiration! Tab overload). So, if you feel like some enlightenment, looking at visual treats and perhaps wasting away your afternoon (in the best way possible) then it is time to get reading!

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