• Wiebke Siem

    Johnen + Schöttle

    In an anonymous lithograph from 1840, we see a Shaker meeting. The believers dance in two circles toward one another, segregated by sex. The two groups don’t touch each other. Difference, distance, and isolation between the sexes is the subject of these works. On the wall, in the background, the coats and hats of the dancers are hung in a very orderly fashion; within each group they are exactly the same, but each group is styled to be either masculine or feminine. This scene is alienating; it tells us of an esthetic of difference, and of a silence between the sexes that leads them both on a path

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