New York

Sue Etkin

Paul Kasmin Gallery / Massimo Audiello Gallery

Surely the irony has not escaped notice that when male artists appropriate domestic objects such as pots and pans (Haim Steinbach), slipcovers or a wedding dress (Robert Gober), tapestries (Meyer Vaisman),or crocheted blankets (Mike Kelley), they are credited with engaging the discourse of commodification, whereas the same artifacts have been essentially off-limits to female artists seeking to develop an authoritative voice. If a woman had put a stack of cookware on a Formica shelf, it would undoubtedly be regarded merely as a distaff symbolizing woman’s work and concerns à la ’70s-style “Womanhouse” feminist art. By contrast, Barbara Kruger, Silvia Kolbowski, Jenny Holzer, and others have charted the contemporary lexical map of feminism by seizing corporate advertising, electronic media, and language in general as sites of patriarchal power and control, in order to rearticulate female

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