This Thursday I have to commit to a topic in Theory and Criticism. Having spent days adrift in indecision, I have narrowed my subject to two possiblities. One, is to argue that the only ethical way to create art is to use non-toxic, biodegradable materials(or not to make art at all!). I mentioned to my professor (who is also my dept. chair, my boss) that I was loathe to use this subject because I wasn't certain that I would always work that way. She pointed out that I could make the argument with the knowledge that I would be, by my own definition, unethical.
It is more like that I will commit to my second idea. I want to set this up before I divulge the idea.
When I was completing my undergraduate work, I wrote a paper for my "Women in Art History" class (a class I will most likely teach in the Fall of '05!) that dealt with images of childbirth in art history. Ok, let me back up further. That was the paper I set out to write, but for one small problem. There were like, uh... 2, maybe 3. I found a plethora of images of women-as-mothers and women-as-sex-objects, but women as juicy, writhin', screamin' intruments of birth? Next to zilch.
So this paper took a turn. I posited why this might be. I said it went all the way back to one woman-hating, religous twit whose family of origin codependent rage has been acted out ever since way back when. Except, ya know, I dressed it up all academic like so that it was credible. With sources and everything!
And then.. I moved on. Or so I thought.
Last May I painted what I thought might be my last nude self portraits for a solo show. Last Fall I discovered that the board has since enacted a "no nudes" policy for their gallery space. I have visited that event in this blog before. I the last week or so I have been reminded regularly by a number of incidences that we still live in a vagina loathing society. And it is only getting worse.
I might still have something to add to this subject.
What do you think? Why are women's bodies so freakin' frightening?