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Women and Power


  • Chatham Bookstore 27 Main Street Chatham, NY 12037 USA (map)

Inspired by Mary Beard’s recent manifesto, Women and Power, I am galvanized to revisit and reclaim this series of sculptures for this exhibition at the Chatham bookstore. Originally produced in 2002, they were first exhibited at the Smithsonian Craft Show in Washington DC in 2002-2003 and again at the Mark MacDonald Gallery in Hudson in 2005. The newly reinvigorated women’s movement has elicited their return to public life.

 from left: Brooke Astor, Claire McCardell, Dorothy Draper. Edith Head, Elsie de Wolfe

from left: Brooke Astor, Claire McCardell, Dorothy Draper. Edith Head, Elsie de Wolfe

 

Begun in 2002, my Women and Power series was sparked by a sense of enthusiasm for the group of women I first represented in decorated porcelain.  The bottles were born and wore dresses. Each of the women articulated in these whimsical representations held a certain kind of power. They are historical, and many were trailblazers, like Elsie deWolfe and Dorothy Draper, known for their interior design influence and possessing a unique power and influence in the realm of design and style as well as emphasizing an American aristocratic class, one that spawned the art world and its incumbent economic transformation.  I thought it was important to be reminded of their influence and so I sought to identify each bottle with a specific person. At the time that I conceived of this project, I had just finished reading Katherine Graham’s memoir and was struck by her courage in taking over the Washington Post and effectively bringing Richard Nixon to justice.

The Women and Power series includes:

1. Elsie deWolfe

2. Dorothy Draper

3. Clare Macardell

4. Edith Head

5. Katherine Graham

6. Marie Antoinette

7. Babe Paley

8. Brooke Astor

9. Hannah Arendt

10. Gertrude Stein

11. Alice B. Toklas

This exhibition has rekindled my passion for Women and Power, as has this year in politics, the year I am calling Women Rising. I will add more female personalities to this collection and continue to build the recognition of female influence in the realms of fashion, design, politics, literature and philosophy. And power.  

Earlier Event: December 16
Studio Holiday Open House
Later Event: May 26
Welcome to Summer in Spencertown