Lately I have been getting more questions about what my work means- what is my message. The following is the statement I use to describe my work and the issues I am concerned with that drive me to make the art...
“Bird Watching” Finding power and confidence as a woman in a still male dominated society and creating art that discusses the role of women
Women are at a crossroads. We are no longer simply fighting for equality, but must now fight to be fully represented, involved and lead.
Reinventing how others view us, and how we see ourselves, will be a crucial factor in this endeavor.
My artwork juxtaposes aging and death with couture design elements. Using images of bird skins (taxidermy birds in museums) I am stirring up an old nickname-birds- that men once used to refer to women. Some would argue that the term isn’t derogatory, and
others would disagree. I believe the term makes women into creatures to be dressed up or
cared for-to be owned. The petticoats and crinolines I add to my banners refer to the idea of
“dressing” a woman, often times as society expects and to please a man. However, the
confusion in my mind lies in the fact that many women, including myself, are happy and
confident when dressed up in ball gowns and flattering clothing and what does that mean for the struggle.
My work discusses the predicament I find myself in with this topic. It’s difficult to confront aging, wilting, dying, which “diminishes” a woman’s value in our world. However, having “dressed up” the wilting flowers, or dead birds, I am flipping the idea back on itself and creating beauty. So does the seemingly misogynous notion that women should be dressed up to be noticed fly in the face of being a feminist? And how does one keep her confidence in a society that sees less value in a woman as she ages? And how will we continue the struggle for full inclusion?
I hope this helps!