From the quilting of female slaves, to Betsy Ross’s flag, right up to the pussy hats
seen on ladies during the Woman’s March, women-led craft work with textiles,
knitting, and tapestries have defined the culture. Whether a task/job imposed by
employer or master, a finely-honed skill that took said lady to industrial heights (or
historic infamy) or an unabashed strike for feminism, women creating product and
protest from skill with design is something we will most probably see forever.
From cotton weaving to digital manifestations, there is no telling where skill, eye
on detail and an informed feminist grace might next lead us next to being our best
Most recently Ed Victori and Celine Mo, owners of the Brooklyn-based
Victori+Mo gallery (http://victorimo.com/), showcased women-based, certainly
feminist expressions via textile art in their “Nasty Stitches” exhibition.
Sex positive museum exhibitions, feminist art displays, cultural comments via
provocative gallery showings is all something the EHM has displayed and will
forever search out to champion. Holding no discrimination to who makes what, a
sex positive museum like ours or a gallery like Victori+Mo search for gender
positive representations…or at the very least, showings that will provoke the Q&A
so needed these days. Featuring the work of four artists-Caroline Wells Chandler,
Elsa Hansen, Sara Sachs and Katrina Majkut-‘stitched’ likeness of famous pop
celebrities, cross-stitches representing condom wrappers and surgical tools,
striking social-political sexual gender commentary, all were represented in the
“Nasty Stitches” show.
It’s sad to say, but in our current political climate, the Victori and Mo show, which
just ended, is much-needed. But as long as there are women-and men-looking to
challenge and inspire from their art, no matter what that art might be, we can
depend on an evolution of our understanding. Chandler, Hansen, Sachs and Majkut
certainly show us art as much imitates art as it does enlivens it.