AN INCOMPLETE LOOK AT PARTICIPANTS
IN FEMINIST ONLINE ART MOVEMENT(S):
SOLIDARITY PROJECTS + GROUPS ArtAndFeminism
Wikipedia Edit-A-Thon (2) ArtFem.TV Black Girls Code
Bunny Collective Center for Feminist Pedagogy Conversations With Women Crash Override Network Dames Making Games Deep Lab Discwoman Everyday Sexism Project FACES FEMICOM Museum FemTechNet futurefemmes Gallery Tally genderchangers.org Girls of the Internet Museum
(GIM) Girls Only NYC Girls Who Code Hollaback! Institute for Women and
Art Learn to Search Mentoring Artists For Women’s Art Old Boys Network Panoply Performance Laboratory Peachy Keen Collective Queer Technologies
[secret girl group] Son of a Patriarch Stop Street Harassment StudioXX Tactical Technology Collective The Coven The Feminist Art
Project Tracers Book Club UCLA Voidlab When Women Refuse (wo)manorial Women In Swedish Performing Arts Women’s Center for Creative
Work Women’s Rights
Journal of Feminist Art and Digital Culture
A CUPS podcast
Bluestockings Magazine Codette Girls Get Busy Girls Like Us
Illuminati Girl Gang Lies Journal Offworld SALT. Shabby Doll House S S I S S T E R S S Tender Journal THE LE SIGH The
Rise of the Videogame Zinesters
SUPPORTING INSTITUTIONS: Arcadia
Missa Aux Performance Space Centre
des arts actuels Skol Centre Hubertine Auclaire Eastern Bloc Elizabeth A. Sackler
Center for Feminist Art (Brooklyn Museum) Eyebeam Art + Technology Center, NYC Franklin Furnace Performance Archive PARMER PWRPLNT Rhizome at the New Museum Transfer Gallery
ARTISTS/DESIGNERS/FACILITATORS/INDIE GAME MAKERS ETC: Annie
Abrahams Steph Alarcon
Morehshin Allahyari Alma Alloro
Kari Altmann Patricia Alvarado Kaja Cxzy Andersen Anna Anthropy Aevee Bee Genevieve Belleveau Hannah Black Mary Bond Cristine Brache Mattie Brice Arvida Byström Micha Cárdenas Jennifer Chan Naomi Clark Christen Clifford Andrea Coates Petra Collins Lauren Cook Samantha Conlon Andrea Crespo Anna Crews Jesse Darling Stephanie Davidson Ella Dawn Angelina Dreem Kate Durbin Hannah Epstein Suzon Fuks Nina Freeman Carla Gannis Erin Gee Emilie Gervais Gross Girl Problems Randi Lee Harper Claudia Hart Deanna Havas Hannah Heilmann Ann Hirsch Faith Holland Erica Lapadat Janzen E. Jane Natalie
Jeremijenko Miranda July Soha Kareem Zahira Kelly Rosemary Kirton merrit kopas Elisa Kreisinger Olia Lialina Life of a Craphead Anya Liftig Kristin Lucas Amber Lundy Divya Manian Amelia Marzec Cat Mazza Rea McNamara Jennifer Mehigan Grace Miceli A. Minolti Lorna
York Times Feminist Reading Group Not in the Kitchen Anymore
(Jenny Haniver) Lora Nouk Lena NW @ok_cucumber Marisa Olson Louise Orwin Party Time! Hexcellent!
(Rachel Simone Weil) Hannah Perry Rachel Perry Welty Sondra Perry Porpentine Sunita
Prasad Erin M. Riley Bunny Rogers Annina Ruest RAFiA Santana Anita Sarkeesian Martine Syms Caroline Sinders Brooke Singer Beth Siveyer Megan Snowe and Reija Meriläinen Molly Soda Krystal South Fannie Sosa Evelin Stermitz Hito Steyerl subRosa Amber Hawk Swanson Martine Syms Elizabeth Tolson Katie Torn Amalia Ulman Addie Wagenknecht Saoirse Wall Angela Washko Faith Wilding Caroline Woolard
Alexander Samantha Allen Ana Cecilia Alvarez Katie JM Baker Jayinee
Basu Amber Berson Gabby Bess Callie Beusman Megan Boyle Melissa Broder Marie Calloway Ana Carrete Diana Cirullo Die
Dunbar-Hester Jane Harris Amanda Hess Frank Hinton Marina
Galperina Mira Gonzalez Lana Polansky Sarah Nicole Prickett Lucy K Shaw Jenna Sutela Rachel Rabbit White Jillian Steinhauer Rachel Wetzler Deanna Zandt Jenny Zhang
Archey Josephine Bosma Sarah Brin Lisa
Cartwright Gaby Cepeda Lauren Cornell Kimberly Drew Sian Evans Rozsa Zita Farkas Lauren Goshinski Beth Heinly Dorothy Howard Jamillah James Liz Losh Jacqueline Mabey Zoe
Marden Antonia Marsh Sally McKay Laurel Ptak Zoë Salditch Astria Suparak
hey if you have time could u point out good sources for the feminism/crafting thing again? sorry to bother u but u said to remind u? im sorry if you dint want to ! ill stop bothering u in that case
yes! okay! this is what you asked about. let me see if I can address it in a way that makes sense!
when I have talked about feminist crafting a lot over the past few months I’ve mainly been talking about “craftivist” revivalists since the late nineties/early 2000s. the big names here are cat mazza, liz collins, sabrina gschwandtner, olek, jenny hart, just a few. this isn’t a cohesive scene, of course, but it’s helpful to think of a few kinda spots a lot of these people showed up: there’s big name shit like yarnbombing or debbie stoller’s stitch n bitch and the stuff in handmade nation; there’s the emergence of noted internet spaces of feminist craft in the nineties, craftster, craftgrrl, early etsy, and so on; then there are the places, especially, where these became Art World moments, see MAD’s radical lace & subversive knitting, MCC’s gestures of resistance, and a number of exhibitions about the legacy of judy chicago and feminist art of the sixties and seventies like the textile museum’s she will always be younger than us.
I’ve said this before, but I’m interested in the long genealogy of “craft” as it partners gender & production. Some historical topics in this field include: male artisans’ organization against the mechanization of production in the second industrial revolution, women as factory laborers in the American northeast–read about Lowell, MA, the feminization of textile labor globally, the late construction of fancywork as a middle-class women’s hobby, depression-era thrifty mothers mythos, the invention of all kinds of appliances for sewing and the marketing of those appliances to housewives, twentieth century art/political movements that oriented themselves in relationship to the machine vs. the hand (most of all bauhaus), etc.
All of these things foregrounded the emergence in the 1960s of handicraft revivalism, which has been talked about a lot as a counterculture movement (this is probably familiar) (citation needed, bear with me, idc about hippies that much). This was also very famously a time when feminists artists–newly a category, Feminist Artists–were trying to define and negotiate a history of “feminine labor.” When you talk about this era you are talking mainly about Judy Chicago and Womanhouse. For anybody reading who isn’t familiar with those things, here is a really rundown rundown: Judy Chicago and some of her contemporaries were concerned with questions like, what is a feminine visual language? where are women in art history? how can we create a woman’s art movement that isn’t ultimately productive for Art, the masculinist regime? Chicago notably started a series of women-teaching-women art programs to pursue these questions, like the feminist art programs in California. This kinda culminated in a thing called Womanhouse (click that link it will really help you see what this was like), where they bought a house and turned it into a women’s artmaking space/collective/venue/school/installation. This is basically the foundation of “popular conceptions of feminist relationships to domestic labor and craft” as I talk about it. There’s a lot of essentialist stuff, like the menstruation bathroom. The other things happening there I think it’s important to know are Sandra Orgel’s Linen Closet and her Ironing performance (both of which are really Over The Head but I kinda like em) and Faith Wilding’s Crocheted Environment/Womb Room.Then, of course, Judy Chicago made this thing called the Dinner Party, which is probably like…the most famous and “important” piece of feminist art (or, Feminist Art) ever. The Sackler Museum–ie, the ambassador of this ideology–has a pretty good piece about all of this. I don’t mean to suggest you read it uncritically, but it gives you a narrative of this stuff and shows you the kind of historical arguments this feminism wants to make.
Sooo, there is no shortage of criticism of these people, mainly Judy Chicago. I kinda don’t think there’s anything good about Judy Chicago? That’s just me though. The main issues with her work are that she is essentialist, classist, and very very racist. She also has a reputation for being something of a…manipulative public figure, obsessed with legitimizing herself, controlling other feminists’ aesthetics and so on. Amelia Jones edited a book about The Dinner Party that has a piece in it, I think it’s Laura Cottingham’s piece but I can’t remember, that does a pretty good job of tracing criticisms of Chicago and grounding them in Greenbergian kinda sexist ideas about high art and craft and kitsch and stuff. In sum: contemporary criticism of Chicago was misogynistic but also she is pretty…you know, problematic. (This is not to say there weren’t also feminist criticisms of her work.) I have posted about this before. Mainly, I think she exploited a lot of labor. (Joyce Weiland, who is Canadian, is another really, really good example of a feminist artist from around this time who was trying to make kinda ahistorical arguments about Women’s Labor by paying/asking women who were more skilled than she was to craft things for her installations, she also appropriated a lot of indigenous women’s labor and was really, really, really racist.)
Um…so, there’s some background. What was the question? uh
Okay, now you know a bit about the contemporary feminist craft revivalists and the history of feminist craft they situate themselves within. (Cat Mazza said in an interview once that Faith Wilding herself was her mentor.) My particular criticisms with these contemporary artists is that they are often simply reproducing the methods of Judy Chicago et al without any sort of recontextualization or recognition of any criticisms. (A good example: vagina knitting.) What I am MOST interested in criticizing about these artists, though, is not just their relationship to feminist activism but to labor activism and anti-war activism. Mazza and Gschwandtner very very often use nostalgic white nationalist memory to make a soft anti-war message that is so not interested in talking about imperialism that it’s pretty imperialistic. Exhibit A: Gschwandtner’s Wartime Knitting Circle, an installation where people (a feminized audience tbh) were invited to come learn to knit in a museum, in reenactment of/homage to revolutionary war-era women’s Knitting For War Causes. Exhibit B: Cat Mazza’s Stitch for Senate, where she had people knit replicas of the balaclavas that British women allegedly knitted to send to soldiers in the Crimean War, to send them to senators (not necessarily even actual soldiers) as a statement about…well, allegedly about the wrongness of war, but more directly about the American soldiers fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan who, I guess, we needed to give more money to. They weren’t really anti-war arguments, they were pro-soldier sentimental projects about the role of women in imperialist statebuilding.
There’s also Mazza’s Nike Quilt, which I have talked about a lot, where she made a petition that involved submissions of granny squares that she wanted to show to the ceo of nike to ask him to please stop using sweatshop labor. (The thing I always find so appalling about all of these arguments of labor–from the very beginning!–are the way that use the hand in “the handmade” to contrast the machine/inhuman of actual laborers in actual factories, lol.)
I think a lot of critics and theorists and historians are talking about this stuff, Mazza and Gschwandtner especially, but are not willing to raise any sorts of questions about white feminist nationalism in activist art. Julia Bryan Wilson is a very very very important art historian who I do love but I think could stand to be a bit meaner, she writes about this stuff generally and you might wanna take a look. Pretty much every complaint is pretty well illustrated in this roundtable.
Tags of note: #craft, #fiber, and I used to use #potholder feminism, you should look at that one! I can’t believe I forgot about it