Mounting the Wall of Fatigue ~ an AGO First Thursday Talk

This talk was presented at the Art Gallery of Ontario for First Thursday: Still Nasty on March 2nd 2017. Still Nasty was guest curated by OCAD’s graduate class in Criticism and Curatorial Practice. What follows is an essay-ish version of my ten minute talk. 

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I would like to begin my talk by acknowledge that Toronto has been home to many indigenous nations, most recently the Mississaugas of the New Credit First Nation. In my research for this talk I learned that this land was appropriated by the British Crown in a series of shady treaties, most famously the Toronto Purchase of 1805 which swindled the Mississaugas out of this land for ten shillings. The Mississaugas filed a land claim in 1986 and after 24 years of legal negotiations the Canadian government finally acknowledged it’s failure to ever pay for the original land outlined in the Toronto Purchase. The government paid $145 million retroactively in 2010 for this land (a large portion of Toronto is actually unceded territory). Part of the reason it took so long to reach a settlement is Indigenous nations were not able to file land claims until the 1970s and a fair system to hear these claims was not devised until 2008. I also want to acknowledge that I am a settler of British ancestry and have privileged citizenship in the country through settler inheritance and the displacement of Indigenous people.  I am also a queer writer and curator with an Art History background. Tonight I am going to be speaking about The Wall of Fatigue a work by the FASTWÜRMS. The FASTWÜRMS are a queer art collective and this work is about Canada’s relationship to the land as a settler colonial nation. In keeping with tonight's theme of feminist futurities I want to use this work as a starting point to think through decolonizing queer and feminist visions of the future.

 FASTWURMS. Wall of Fatigue [from the installation “Snow-She-Bones” at the Ydessa Gallery in 1983], 1983. Industrial galvanized metal panels, four pulleys, four burlap sacks full of potatoes, variable dimensions. FASTWURMS. © FASTWURMS 2017.

FASTWURMS. Wall of Fatigue [from the installation “Snow-She-Bones” at the Ydessa Gallery in 1983], 1983. Industrial galvanized metal panels, four pulleys, four burlap sacks full of potatoes, variable dimensions. FASTWURMS. © FASTWURMS 2017.

Formed in 1979 FASTWÜRMS is the cultural project, trademark, and joint authorship of Kim Kozzi and Dai Skuse. FASTWÜRMS artwork is characterized by a determined DIY sensibility, Witch Nation identity politics, and a keen allegiance towards working class, queer alliance, and artist collaborationsThe Wall of Fatigue was created in 1983 as part of a larger installation/exhibition titled Snow-She-Bones at Ydessa Gallery. The work is a critique of Canada as a settler-colonial nation founded on stolen land. Settler colonialism is a very specific form of colonialism; a key part of colonialism is always resource extraction and accumulation, however, in settler colonialism the horizons of the settler nation-state are total. This requires complete appropriation of Indigenous life and land, rather than the selective expropriation of profit-producing fragments (Tuck and Yang 5). Within settler colonialism the most important concern is always land, this is important to understand because settlers make Indigenous land their new home and source of capital, but also because, “the disruption of Indigenous relationship to land represents a profound epistemic, ontological, cosmological violence” (Tuck and Yang 5). This violence is not temporally contained in the arrival of the settler but is reasserted each day of occupation, including today.

 The Wall of Fatigue depicts a large empty landscape with a broken tree near the centre.  The broken tree represents the breaking of treaties with Indigenous nations by the Canadian government.  The empty landscape illustrates the concept of terra nulluis (empty land) used to justify European sovereignty over Indigenous lands by depicting the land as empty . Terra nulluis has been illustrated in the work of many settler Canadian artists, most famously the Group of Seven, and used to continually reassert the myth that North America was unoccupied before Europeans "discovered" the land. One of the 2015 Truth and Reconciliation calls to action is to repudiate concepts such as terra nulluis and the doctrine of discovery (Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada: Calls to Action 5).

The second component of The Wall of Fatigue is the punch clock and time cards behind the wall (these cards are a take away). The punch clock has become an icon of factory work, unionized labour, and the working class. In the original exhibition the premise was that viewers entered the gallery not as a neutral audience but as a workers. The intended work of the piece is learning our relationship to the land as settlers and understanding the history of settler colonialism and broken treaties. This is the work of decolonizing our minds and histories as settlers. The piece advocates working towards more informed relationship with the land and Indigenous nations.

In our contemporary moment the punch clock can also reference the fantasy of the return of factory work in North America held in large part by the white working class, a powerful desire illustrated by Donald Trump’s recent election platform. This fantasy is being exploited by politicians such as Trump and Trudeau with the promise of thousands of jobs in the oil industry, which are actually a fiction used to appease angry voters and privilege powerful corporations. By exploiting the fantasy of stable work and a prosperous economy the Canadian government believes it can privilege the expansion of the oil industry and the construction of new pipelines over human and environmental concerns. What is happening with pipelines such as Dakota Access in the United States and the Kinder Morgan pipeline and others in Canada is illustrative of the ongoing operations of settler colonialism in North America.  We have been witnessing the state cooperate in the suppression of all resistance to pipeline projects that most certainly threaten the environment and directly conflict with Indigenous sovereignty. The situation at Standing Rock Sioux Nation in particular highlights ongoing environmental racism; the use of indigenous land for projects not wanted in settler communities. The suppression of physical and legal resistance to the pipeline are violations of Indigenous sovereignty and treaties, as well as human rights violation in the form of militarized attack on non-violent community resistance. This is a continuation of a long history of encroaching on Indigenous land and sovereignty and the privileging of capitalist settler interests over all else.  I think it is also important to highlight that the way in which the conversation about pipelines is framed by the settler state is an incredible simplification of a complex network of historic and contemporary concerns which purposefully obscures the dire stakes of these struggles.

 Illustration on the Canadian two dollar bill. 

Illustration on the Canadian two dollar bill. 

On the back of the timecards is the retired Canadian 2 dollar bill. The scene on bill depicts Inuit seal hunters. This photo is an example of the decontextualization and appropriation of Indigenous culture to mask ongoing settler colonial violence in Canada.  These specific hunters were actually displaced by the Canadian government, forced to move to the high arctic in the 1950s to assert Canadian sovereignty in the north. The community did not adjust well to the difficult move and harsh climate. The government provided very little support despite initiating the move and eventually issued an apology in 2010 for using the community as human flagpoles (CBC). This apology is an example of Canada’s approach to reconciliation; an apology for past atrocities is issued, some money for reparations may be set aside, and Canada believes it can move on. Reconciliation however, is defined by the logics of the settler colonial state. As Billy-Ray Belcourt, a scholar from Driftpile Cree Nation, describes; “Reconciliation is an affective mess: it throws together and condenses histories of trauma and their shaky bodies and feelings into a neatly bordered desire; a desire to let go, to move on, to turn to the future with open arms, as it were. Reconciliation is stubbornly ambivalent in its potentiality, an object of desire that we’re not entirely certain how to acquire or substantiate, but one that the state – reified through the bodies of politicians, Indigenous or otherwise – is telling us we need”. As Belcourt further elaborates, "reconciliation works as a way of looking forward to being in this world, at the expense of more radical projects like decolonization that want to experiment with different strategies for survival”. Reconciliation ensures a settler future by refusing to radically unsettle the power of the state

QUEER/FEMINIST Futurities

As we engage with and contemplate futurities tonight it is important to acknowledge that imagining the future is rarely ever a neutral enterprise. As we think about queer and feminist futurities it is integral that we critically intervene in the normalization of the settler colonial state. This may seem obvious as queer politics were conceptualized as a resistance to regimes of the normal, however, may social justice movements in North American, including queer activism and theory have historically failed to centre and understand that their struggles have taken place on stolen land or connect their struggle against heteropatriarchy to the larger network of settler colonial power (Smith 44).  

Queer indigenous criticisms show that settler colonialism is the historical and institutional root of heteronormative binary sex/gender systems. To critique heteronormativity fully is actually to critique colonial power (Drikill, Finley, Gilley, and Morgensen, 217). As scholar Scott Morgensen asserts, non-native LGBTQ people can alter our organizing by critiquing setter colonialism, and on that basis meet Native people in accountable relationships based in anti-colonial alliance politics (Morgensen 138). As non-Natives we must consider our colonial inheritance when occupying Native land or investing in belonging in settler society, where feeling at home is inseparable from the displacement of native peoples. Defining gender or sexual liberation in civil rights or multicultural inclusion frameworks makes the settler state the horizon of freedom and reinforces settler authority on Native land (143).

Part of the politics of decolonization is recognizing that decolonization is a specific project that is not reconcilable or interchangeable with all other social justice causes. Decolonization is about Indigenous sovereignty and it is important to understand that decolonization sets out to change the order of the world. Unlike reconciliation decolonization will implicate and unsettle everyone (Tuck and Yang 7). Decolonization is founded on an ethics of incommensurability, which guides moves that unsettle innocence, and stands in contrast to the aims of reconciliation. Reconciliation is about rescuing settler normalcy and settler futures.  We must acknowledges that questions of settler futures, "need not and perhaps cannot, be answered in order for decolonization to exist as a framework"( Tuck and Yang 35). As theorists Eve Tuck and K. Wayne Yang assert solidarity in the context of decolonization “is an uneasy, reserved, and unsettled matter that neither reconciles present grievances nor forecloses future conflicts”(3). As settlers we must work from a place of understanding difference, solidarity, and incommensurability. Working from a place of incommensurability means acknowledging that all struggles are not the same and decolonization is a specific project with an unknown future.

While I personally believe imagining the future as otherwise is a powerful project, I am also learning that acknowledging what we cannot know in advance is a powerful strategy. In the context of decolonization and projects such as prison abolition imagining alternate futures can be powerful, but we can not let not knowing hinder the urgency of these projects. Just as we often find it hard to imagine a society without prisons we may find it hard to imagine a Canada that does not center settler populations and modes of governance. But I believe a future without prisons is possible. I also believe Canada can give back sovereignty of the land to Indigenous people and learn to respect Indigenous sovereignty and governance structures. Imagining a decolonial queer feminist future is about educating ourselves, working towards ending ongoing settler colonial violence, questioning binary knowledge systems such as the division of nature and culture, ending the carceral state, and protecting the land. It is also about making space for other ways of knowing and acting to surface or be created.

Works Cited/Resources

Andrea Smith. "Queer Theory and Native Studies: The Heteronormativity of Settler Colonialism". Queer Indigenous Studies: Critical Interventions in Theory, Politics, and Literature. Eds. Qwo-Li Driskill, Chris Finley, Brian Joseph Gilley, and Scott Lauria Morgensen. Tucson: University of Arizona Press, 2011. 

Andrew Friesen. "'Human Flagpoles': Dark story behind Inuit scene on $2 bill". CBC News. 06/05/2014. <http://www.cbc.ca/news/indigenous/human-flagpoles-dark-story-behind-inuit-scene-on-2-bill-1.2632380>.

Billy-Ray Belcourt. "Political Depression in a Time of Reconciliation". Activehistory.ca. 15/01/2016. <http://activehistory.ca/2016/01/political-depression-in-a-time-of-reconciliation/>.

Bruce Camion-Smith. "Ottawa apologizes to Inuit for using them as ‘human flagpoles’". The Star. 18/07/2010. <https://www.thestar.com/news/canada/2010/08/18/ottawa_apologizes_to_inuit_for_using_them_as_human_flagpoles.html>.

Eve Tuck and K. Wayne Yang. "Decolonization is not a metaphor". Decolonization: Indigeneity, Education & Society, 1.1 (2012): 1-40. 

FASTÜRMS: DONKY@NINJA@WITCH: A Living Retrospective. Art Gallery of York University. Curated by Philip Monk. Toronto: AYGU, 2010.

NYC Stands with Standing Rock Collective. 2016. “#StandingRockSyllabus.” <https://nycstandswithstandingrock.wordpress.com/standingrocksyllabus/>.

Qwo-Li Driskill, Chris Finley, Brian Joseph Gilley, and Scott Lauria Morgensen. "The Revolution is for Everyone: Imagining an Emancipatory Future through Queer Indigenous Critical Theories". Queer Indigenous Studies: Critical Interventions in Theory, Politics, and Literature. Eds. Qwo-Li Driskill, Chris Finley, Brian Joseph Gilley, and Scott Lauria Morgensen. Tucson: University of Arizona Press, 2011. 

Scott Lauria Morgensen. "Unsettling Queer Politics: What can Non-Natives learn from Two-Spirit Organizing?". Queer Indigenous Studies: Critical Interventions in Theory, Politics, and Literature. Eds. Qwo-Li Driskill, Chris Finley, Brian Joseph Gilley, and Scott Lauria Morgensen. Tucson: University of Arizona Press, 2011. 

Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada: Calls to Action. 2015.<http://www.trc.ca/websites/trcinstitution/File/2015/Findings/Calls_to_Action_English2.pdf>

"A Brief History of Specific claims Prior to the Passage of Bill C-30: The Specific Claims Tribunal Act". 05/12/2011. <http://www.sct-trp.ca/hist/hist_e.htm>.

"SACRED WATER: STANDING ROCK, PART I & II". RISE. Viceland.com. 2017. <https://www.viceland.com/en_us/video/sacred-water-standing-rock-part-i/5888c90ae04dd90112c2893a>.

 

 

"We Can't Keep up/We Won't Keep Down": Feminist Praxis in Art Institutions

"We Can't Keep up/We Won't Keep Down": Feminist Praxis in Art Institutions

Genevieve Flavelle

Presented at the Concordia University Art History Graduate Conference: No neutral art, no neutral art historians, Montreal, January 28th 2017

 

    It has been precisely a decade since 2007 was proclaimed the “year of feminism” by the American art press. 2017 is thus ripe for the mainstream identity politics conversation to return its focus to  feminism.  As contemporary and historic forms of feminist art continue to assume wider visibility through large touring retrospectives of feminist art, feminist themed programming, and the hiring of vocally feminist curators at major institutions—it feels imperative to ask; what does a seat at the table mean for feminist artists, critics, historians, and curators in 2017? If feminism as a revolutionary strategy is antithetical to art history as a hegemonic discourse, so much so that celebrated art historian Griselda Pollock once questioned whether a feminist art historian can exist, how do we grapple with feminism’s incremental yet increasing incorporation into canonical art discourse? Does the willingness of institutions and the media, to yet again spotlight the underrepresentation and historic erasure of women and feminist artists, signal an opportunity to demand more complex conversations about structural transformation?  Can the recognition of feminist artists wedge open the door to feminist praxis on a grander scale? Is it possible to occupy these privileged art world spaces and practice other ways of working? How can artists working on the “margins” set the terms of their participation in institutional art spaces if invited in? Can the hegemonic practices of art institutions actually be shifted; can art be collected, displayed, and valued in different ways under the influence of feminism?

 

As feminist art is increasingly historicized, questions of progress inevitably arise. 2007 saw a confluence of large feminist themed exhibitions at major museums across North America and Europe. These large-scale touring exhibitions included WACK! Women Artists in Revolution (2007) and Global Feminisms (2007) which coincided with the opening of the Brooklyn Museum's Elizabeth Sackler Feminist Art Centre. The push back by feminist artists and scholars has successfully led to important institutional initiatives including the MoMA’s Modern Woman Project, a research initiative into the MoMA’s holdings which produced several medium specific exhibitions of women artists, an impressive publication, two symposiums on feminism and art, and a lecture series. In 2009 Paris’s Musée National d’Art Moderne staged an unprecedented rehang of their 20th century collection with all women artists. Titled Elles@centrepompidou the exhibition was comprised of almost 1,000 works by over 300 women artists,  it ran for two years. In the process of mounting the exhibition curator Camille Marineau significantly expanded the MNAM’s permanent collection’s holdings with works by women artists (Wroblewsk 4-8). While these landmark exhibitions represent far more institutional struggle and negotiation than we can ever know, and certainly should not go uncelebrated, a studied look reveals that these exhibitions and initiatives have not led to a committed shift within museum culture or altered their host institutions in lasting ways. Most of these highly visible exhibitions were temporary and realized by independent curators and scholars. Funding for initiatives such as Modern Women at the MoMA and the Elizabeth Sackler Centre for Feminist Art came from private endowments from feminist philanthropists (Schwarts 97). When Elles@centrepompidou was taken down, the permanent collection was rehung in exactly the same male dominated narrative as before. These efforts were not focused on the long term wide reaching institutional restructuring and diversification needed for significant change, and therefore minimal change was achieved.

 

Questions of progress are tricky because they are often framed in ways that continue to ascribe power to the dominant system. Token representation is too often used to appease critics while masking the continued discriminatory machinations of the hegemonic art world. While public shaming campaigns such as those created by the Guerilla Girls decrying the meager amount of solo shows by women artists at major institutions are important, they do not necessarily critically probe the underlying barriers to representation. This risks normalizing the given value systems of the art world. If we discard the tactic of strategic essentialism and token representation, such as essentialist identity based exhibitions once a decade, what does it look like to commit to showing artists who are not cis-white men? What could it look like to center and care for these artists? Following feminist art’s mandate as anti-heroic and anti-canonical, with the intention of radically shifting the boundaries of what counts as art, what might feminist practices in art galleries look like?

 

 Feminist Art Gallery Banner, Allyson Mitchell and Deirdre Logue.&nbsp;

Feminist Art Gallery Banner, Allyson Mitchell and Deirdre Logue. 

One model has been proposed by the Toronto based Feminist Art Gallery (FAG). In collaboration with Toronto’s queer and feminist art communities artists Allyson Mitchell and Deirdre Logue founded FAG in 2012. The gallery, whose primary location is a small building in Mitchell and Logue’s west end backyard, functions both as a critique of art institutions and as a proposal for a feminist way of working. FAG uses the term gallery to unpack and revision it. The gallery is positioned as a platform to actively engage in critical discourse, support artists, and build community while  practice new ways of working.  

 Feminist Art Gallery, Toronto ON.&nbsp;

Feminist Art Gallery, Toronto ON. 

FAG employs a variety of strategies that can be named as curatorial activism, queer curatorship, and queer feminist art praxis. These strategies are grounded in politics of refusal, philosophies of care, embodied histories, and the privileging of artistic agency over institutional interests. FAG centers desire and affinity rather than essentialist identity. FAG’s feminist refusal is multifaceted; a refusal of dominant institutional art structures, essentialist identity politics, and polite behaviour. Refusing to wait for permission, FAG has sought to conceptualize what a queer feminist art platform is capable of doing as a present tense project. FAG has creatively reimagined common gallery practices in all aspects of its operations. All projects are funded privately through a matronage program (a feminist play on patronage) rather than public grants. This choice was made to give the community direct investment in the gallery’s programming, and to enable the gallery to be agile in creating and supporting critical projects.

 

FAG initially did most of its programming in its own location, allowing knowledge of its existence to spread through community networks by word of mouth and a facebook page. As attention to the gallery grew FAG began to be invited to do satellite projects at small and large institutions in Canada, and internationally. This is a common pattern; large cultural institutions invite artists to do or perform the work of critique for them, other times artists are invited in just to give the gallery more credibility and surface diversity. While of course this practice produces important exhibitions, career opportunities, and cultural capital for artists, it once again reveals a lack of interest or commitment to structural change. Seeking to remain vocally critical of institutions while supporting the practices of underrepresented artists FAG has strategically utilized these opportunities to bring their new ways of working with them into larger institutions. One such strategy has been the founding of the Feminist Art Collection (FAC). Drawing on generations of queer and feminist institutional critique and the lived experience of artists, FAG’s Feminist Art Collection grapples with creating an intersectional feminist method for the practical collection and display of art that prioritizes artists rather than institutions. Arriving from FAG’s politics of refusal, The Feminist Art Collection is positioned as a response to the question of how to resist from within, and how to reconcile artists’ participation in oppressive systems of institutions, commerce, and fame.

Mitchell and Logue state that the Collection ;

does not work to contain, possess, or capitalize on artists. Instead, it aims to present a decentralized collection of work, one that resists the idea of a canon. The Collection is at once an intervention and a response, at once a formal collection and its opposition and ultimately a critique of art institutions and the powers that dominate the art world (Mitchell and Logue, 69).  

FAG has used the Collection as the basis for three exhibitions across Canada at the Lethbridge University Gallery, Doris McCarthy Gallery, and the Art Gallery of Windsor . The collection is based on two primary goals; a strategy to challenge existing institutional models and ultimately by-pass the institution entirely, and a method for artists and activists “to work in solidarity on the project of making this work visible, to give this work value, and to charge artists, collectors and future exhibitors with the task of caring for about feminist and queer work”(Mitchell and Logue 70). The Collection works through a decentralized method in which no one person or institution owns the collection—artworks are nominated by their artists or owners to be in the Collection, works can be added or removed at anytime, and if the work is owned by the artist the Collection will assist in having an enabler, collector, or the host institution purchase the work.

Seeking to avoid alignment with didactically feminist tropes, Mitchell and Logue situate the Collection in a feminism that is an exploded and embodied political position. Built through matrices of queer relations and feminist affiliations, the Collection encompasses and aims to serve; “feminist and queer artists, artists of colour, Aboriginal artists, women artists, trans artists and artists with disability/ies” who are making politicized art, but are being failed by the art system. Mitchell and Logue assert that if the creation of the Feminist Art Collection can act as a platform to encourage artists “to participate in identifying and describing feminist and/or queer work” it will connect and foster “a critical mass of feminists and/or queers invested in the Collections care and contextualization, AND a Collection that resists the museum model that has failed feminists and/or queers and will continue to fail feminist and/or queer art”(Mitchell and Logue 74). By taking the power of legitimacy and care into its own hands the Feminist Art Collection furthers the careers of its artists while enacting critical queer feminist engagements with art institutions.

FAG’s strategies are nimble in their negotiation of identity and power. Seeking to avoid a splintering of identity the Feminist Art Collection is adamant in its intersectionality and inclusivity, a work only need the nomination of one enabler to be considered feminist. This way of working is a useful strategy for avoiding ghettoization and opening up new lines of affiliation between works. It is also possible to translate into  larger institutional and historical settings. Curator Helen Molesworth conceptually demonstrates this in her provocative essay for the Modern Women publication, “How to Hang Art as A Feminist”.  Exploring the MoMA collection of works by women artists Molesworth proposes a feminist approach to display that is non-linear, non-hierarchical, and rhizomatic.  Rather than inserting women/feminist artists into spaces of absence in the tradition of feminist art histories Molesworth asks;

Is it a revolution of the deepest order to insert women artists back into rooms that have been structured by their very absence? What would it mean to take this absence as the very historical condition under which the work of women artists is both produced and understood? Might feminism allow us to imagine different genealogies and hence different versions of how we tell the history of art made by women, as well as art made under the influence of feminism? (Molesworth 504)

Opposing the patriarchal logic of art history as a narrative of progress in which new generations of artist work from a disavowal of the old generation, Molesworth thinks through feminist genealogies of art. Drawing on queer models of relation Molesworth proposes a new model of historical display. She argues for a method that, “allows us to think about lines of influence and conditions of production that are organized horizontally, by necessarily competing ideas of identification, attachment, sameness, and difference, as opposed to our all too familiar (vertical) narratives of exclusion, rejection, and triumph”(Molesworth 507). This allows her to connect different generations of contemporary and historic artists, pair artists formally deemed feminist with “non-feminist” artists, and construct complex conceptual and formal exchanges between unexpected works. By recalibrating how we structure historical narratives Molesworth attempts to translate new discursive formations into the spatial requirements of the museum, on a grand scale she proposed that, “such a modification in our thinking might in turn help us reorganize our institutional dynamics of power”(Molesworth).

 Andrea Geyer, They Said Revolt!, image crop, 2012-on going&nbsp;

Andrea Geyer, They Said Revolt!, image crop, 2012-on going 

I am aware that these are two small examples of what queer feminist practices could look like in large institutions. I believe for large institutions to become sites of complex, expanded art histories several shifts need to continue to take place at every level of the institution; reshaping  not only the narratives of art history but also the very architecture of these spaces, how they construct and narrate encounters with artworks, and who is hired to make these decisions. I think a really deep shift in power, how power is acknowledged, and the questioning and unknowing of this power needs to take place. I’m becoming increasing interested in projects that shift focus from bringing diverse artists and audiences into institution and instead focus on bringing the resources of institutions outside of their own walls. As Pollock argues, the dominant structural elements of art institutions have actively rendered the acknowledgment of women, queers, and folks of colour, “in the modernist enterprise difficult to imagine or integrate, even as some initiatives are being made to place more works by more women on view”(Pollock 51). While another round of group and solo exhibitions that highlight women and feminist artists is great I’m far more interested in strategies that imagine how we can integrate feminists artists while also transforming the very framework we are integrating into. I think one step is surely an ethical investment in the collection and care of works by underrepresented artists. Another is the development of new strategies for the interpretation and contextualization of works that have been prominently absent. Independent projects such as FAG offer more than important critiques of the art world, they enact and embody new ways of working that extend beyond any one physical space and may move from the periphery into the centre as they gain attention and traction. Moving beyond special exhibitions and revisionist initiatives toward strategic methods of feminist display and collecting begins a necessary shift away from the complex pitfalls of identity politics toward building something  transformational.


Works Cited

Molesworth, Helen. “How to Install Art as a Feminist”. Modern Women: Women at The Museum of Modern Art. ed. Butler, Cornelia and Alexandra Schwartz. New York: MOMA, 2014.

Mitchell, Allyson, and Logue, Deirdre. “We Can’t Compete”. Complex Social Change. Lethbridge: University of Lethbridge, 2014.

Pollock, Griselda. “The Missing Future, MoMA and Modern Women”. Modern Women: Women Artists at the Museum of Modern Art. ed Cornelia Butler and Alexandra Schwartz. New York, MoMA, 2014.

Schwarts, Alexandra. “MoMA’s Modern Women Project, Feminisms, and Curatorial Practice”. Curating Differently: Feminisms, Exhibitions and Curatorial Spaces. Ed.Jessica Sjöholm Skrubbe. Newcastle upon Tyne UK: Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2016.

Wroblewski, Ania. “Le baiser de l'institution: Feminism After Elles”, C magazine 117 (Spring 2013).