Kamis, 02 Maret 2006

Women by women

Billboard (2003) by Heta Kuchka

Billboard (2003) by Liv Carlé
Part of the Billboard project www.women2003 :
From 23. March to 4. April [2003] one hundred and two Scandinavian female artists will present their own personal and artistic female image in the public space ? entering a dialogue with the images created by commercials. (...)
In that way the new female images created by this project will form a solid and diverse contrast to the monotonous representations created by the commercial market.
What is strange is how many of these works (the ones above included) define the woman through her relation to the man.
Both these images are disturbing. And they say somewhat similar things - the fear of rejection, the question of being appealing or not, the scary idea that the author, a woman, is completely wrong, just because she is herself.
And while it's supposed to question our values as men (and women who accept this), I'm not sure if it doesn't do exactly the opposite, provoking us to answer, "Get a grip on yourself girl! If you can't make him appreciate you for who you are, if you can't gain respect, if you get a guy that sees you as a toy, you better look around. There are plenty more of us, you know".
But, look at it from another point of view. The two works I present are part of a series of actual billboards put in and around Copenhagen and Malmö. They are not as much a statement, as they are an answer. They laugh at the myth. At the plastic imagery we know all-too-well. And if that answer tells more about men than about women, it might be giving us a hint about the images it aims to reply to.

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