Feminism

2015

The Baroness Elsa von Freytag-Loringhoven né Plotz, was an unsung member of the Dada Movement. A poet, artist, runaway, and all around public provocateur; she actively did not fit into her historical moment, and like most misfits, suffered for it. As with many women artists throughout history, her cultural legacy has been obscured and in some instances appropriated into the oeuvres of better known male peers.

2001
Barbara Aronofsky Latham, Barbara Latham Videoworks: Volume 1

The five videos featured here investigate video as a tool for storytelling and the construction of alternate identities. Ultimately Latham concludes that video is an unsatisfactory and cumbersome tool useful only for the creation of dislocated narratives.

1998
Cecilia Dougherty, Laurie

Laurie was inspired by Laurie Weeks’ uncanny ability to simultaneously embody her characters and write them from a clear distance. The text in question is just a few paragraphs from a draft of the novel Zipper Mouth, more than ten years in the making, and published by the Feminist Press.

1976
Learn Where the Meat Comes From

A classic feminist video, Learn Where the Meat Comes From depicts how “gourmet carnivore tastes take on a cannibalistic edge. This parody of a Julia Child cooking lesson collapses the roles of consumer and consumed: Lacy instructs us in the proper butcher’s terms for cuts of meat by pointing them out on her body. As the lesson progresses she becomes more and more animal-like, growling and baring over-sized incisors. Perhaps, in her role as a gourmet cook, she is herself as much consumed as consumer.”

1978
Learning to Talk

This video is related to Seven Years of Living Art (a seven-year performance of personal endurance Montano began in December of 1984) and adopts the Zen Chakra system of seven centers as a structuring device. The adoption of the Chakra system arises from Montano’s commitment to the study of Eastern culture and religion.

1974
Lucy Lippard 1974: An Interview

Lucy Lippard (b. 1937) earned degrees from Smith College and New York University before beginning her career as an art critic in 1962, when she began contributing to publications such as Art International and later, Artforum. In 1966, she organized an exhibition entitled Eccentric Abstraction at the Fischbach Gallery in New York City.  

1979

Lucy Lippard (b. 1937) earned degrees from Smith College and New York University before beginning her career as an art critic in 1962, when she began contributing to publications such as Art International and, later, Artforum. In 1966, she organized an exhibition entitled “Eccentric Abstraction” at the Fischbach Gallery in New York City. “Eccentric Abstraction” set the standard for what would later be regarded as postminimalism, process, or antiform art.

2001
Lisa

Two women occupy one space. Without showing their faces, the camera lingers on their bodies in images that capture both from an extreme high angle. The camera distorts the female body, even creating a grotesque effect. A voice repeatedly calls for a woman: “Lisa, come here, don’t be afraid… that’s it, I won’t hurt you.” A video which explores the gaze on the female body, and the desires and violence overwhelming it.

This title is also available on Hester Scheurwater Videoworks: Volume 1.

1989
Living Inside

When she was 16, Benning stopped going to high school for three weeks and stayed inside with her camera, her TV set, and a pile of dirty laundry. This tape mirrors her psyche during this time. With the image breaking up between edits, the rough quality of this early tape captures Benning’s sense of isolation and sadness, her retreat from the world. As such, Living Inside is the confession of a chronic outsider.

This title is also available on Sadie Benning Videoworks: Volume 1.

1977
Losing: A Conversation with the Parents

Treating the problem of anorexia nervosa from the parents' perspective, Rosler presents a mother and father speaking about the tragedy of their daughter's death as a result of dieting. The conversation turns toward the irony of self-starvation in a land of plenty and toward the international politics of food, where food aid is used as a negotiating tool. Confronting a serious issue, Rosler simultaneously sets into play the confessional form and the ghoulish staginess of talk show dramatics.

 

1984
Made For TV

Combining Rubnitz’s skillful manipulation of the familiar “look” of TV shows with an extraordinary range of characters, performer Ann Magnuson convincingly impersonates the array of female types seen on TV in a typical broadcast day. From glitzy to drab, from friendly housewife to desperate evangelist, Magnuson is a one-woman universe appearing on every channel, the star of every program—giving her all as the chameleon woman who is always on display.

2005
Mama

"Mama mama mama...," a woman calls out again and again, over and over. Is it her child that she mimics, or is she calling for her own mother? A desperate video performance in the first person.

1988
Laura Kipnis, A Man's Woman

This fictional docudrama—based in part on the careers of Anita Bryant, Phyllis Schlafly, and Marabel Morgan—covers the fictitious assassination of Clovis Kingsley, a powerful, pro-family, anti-feminist ideologue, and fictional author of The Power of Total Submission. The narrative is reconstructed in fractured and contradictory flashbacks by those who knew her best and liked her least. The tape travels beyond the faux biography to suggest that the logic of anti-feminism is a strategy of the disempowered.

1990
Marx: The Video

Kipnis describes this tape as "an appropriation of the aesthetics of both late capitalism and early Soviet cinema—MTV meets Eisenstein—reconstructing Karl Marx for the video age.” She presents a postmodern lecture delivered by a chorus of drag queens on the unexpected corelations between Marx’s theories and the carbuncles that plagued the body of the rotund thinker for over thirty years. Marx’s erupting, diseased body is juxtaposed with the “body politic", and posited as a symbol of contemporary society proceeding the failed revolutions of the late 1960s.

1987
Mayhem

Through a catalogue of looks, movements, and gestures, Mayhem presents a social order run amok in a libidinous retracing of film noir conventions. Sexuality flows in an atmosphere of sexual tension, danger, violence, and glamour; antagonism between the sexes is symbolized in the costuming of women in polka dots and men in stripes. Censored in Tokyo for its use of Japanese lesbian erotica, this tape creates an image bank of what signifies the sexual and the seductive in the history of imagemaking, pointing to the way we learn about our bodies, and how to use them from images.