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Tuesday, April 24, 2007

1:56 PM Posted by Cindy Nemser No comments

On April 20, 2007 I replied to Cristina Biaggi who was asking if another show including goddess imagery was being planned. I thought many of you would like to know about an exhibition we think should be in the works to recover our veteran feminists art and our veteran feminists' art history. I was at an event last week at the Brooklyn Museum where Maura Reilly titillated her audience by saying that the Feminist wing had a show in the works, but she would not say one word about what kind of a show it would be. She told me she regretted not being able to do the exhibition she wanted to do, the one we all wanted to see, but Connie Butler had taken it away from her. Evently, there cannot be two shows about veteran feminists at the same time even though one would be on the East coast and represent many artists who still need to be restored to the public’s sight such as Deborah Remington, Lila Katzen, Lil Picard, Linda Stein, Judith Bernstein, Mary Grigoriadis, and so many more. There is also no more room for a proper documentation of the history of feminism in the arts in the 60's and 70's. Even the activities that went on at the Brooklyn Museum itself at that time are missing. There is no memorabilia of the meeting that the coalition of women artists groups had with Duncan Cameron when they demanded an all women exhibition from him right in his office. There is nothing about all the panels and speak-outs that took place in the auditorium.

Everything at the Feminist Wing is wrong: the canonization of Judy Chicago's vulgar, exploitative Dinner Party is uncalled for. The exhibition "Global Feminisms" that excludes the groundbreakers of the movement is wrong. It attempts to be activist and inclusive and excludes the women artists who made history and who made it possible to have a feminist wing. The curators of that show succumbed to the pressure to cater to the demands of a materialistic centered culture that worships its youth and abhors its elders. They seemed also to feel that they had to show they were hip and made sure to get art that was from all over the globe whether it had originality and genuine quality or was just a rehash of the latest art currents that one can find all over Chelsea and the other “hot” art hot spots. It’s sad to say, but the curators sold out and should be ashamed of themselves.

Dear Cristina Biaggi,

I hope there will be an exhibition counteracting the ill thought out one at the Brooklyn Museum, but so far, I have no specific plans to curate such a show. I will be speaking at Artists Talk on Art on April 27 at the School of Visual Arts. Perhaps at that session people will have suggestions as to how to create the show that should have been at the Museum. Linda Stein, Gloria Orenstein, Audrey Anastasi and myself came up with the name "Continuum: Celebrating the Arc of Feminist Creativity." It would include veteran feminist artists of the 60 and 70's and move on with representatives from each decade up to the present. But where could such a large exhibition we presented? It must be a large venue to make a really great impact.

In the meantime write to the Brooklyn Museum at voice your displeasure. The email address is

Thanks for your support

Cindy Nemser


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