Like just about everyone I know I was galvanized by the 2016 elections to change the upside down scary world that Trump being in the White House symbolized. And like most people I know I looked to the skills that are in my wheel house to make change happen. I made art for the #WomensMarch, #ClimateMarch, #ScienceMarch, #TaxMarch, #TrumpcareDieIns, #DreamersMarch and more working with grassroots arts and activism groups #WeMakeAmerica, #GetOrganizedBK and #RiseAndResist. But, as protest fatigue set in and I became more panicked about the upcoming elections, I was searching for other ways to make an impact. At the same time I have been in the midst of my own mid-life crisis struggling to sustain my chosen profession as an artist while trying to save the world and be a mother. After 30 years of intermittent deadlines, chronic pain and sleepless nights (brought on by parenting, pain and exhibiting) with little monetary compensation and a minimum of recognition by media or the art world I felt at my wits end and I have been questioning whether or not the path that I had been so certain of for all of these years was possibly not right.
Then I met Orly Cogan at the 2017 #Yes!Gala at the #SacklerCenterForFeministArt at #TheBrooklynMuseum. We realized we were both at #TheCooperUnion at the same time, we are making related work, we both had kids that are close in age and she could understand my frustrations. She visited my studio and we came up with the idea for #InHerHands to focus on #womenartists working within the tradition of #WomensWork and a way to help cut through the noise of the Trump show, the onslaught of scandal and tragedy, clickbait and the crowded field of candidates running in the #2018elections by asking those artists to make portraits of #ProgressiveWomenCandidates. Orly and I have included ourselves in the exhibit along with 15 extremely skilled, courageous and generous artists who were tasked with an incredibly tight timeline and an invasions into their processes.
"In Her Hands" will open June 14th, 6-8pm #RobertMannGallery in NYC and features work by #AliceBeasley, #OrlyCogan, #LaurelGarciaColvin, #MariaDeLosAngeles, #JaneWaggoner Deschner, #SusanGraham, #KateKretz, #JessLarson, #DianeMeyer, #MarilynArtus, #JuliePeppito, #LeisaRich, #AliciaRoss, #RebeccaSiemering, #MelissaZexter.
Last week I met #MauraReilly at a book signing for #CuratorialActivism she was giving at the #KentlerInternationalDrawingSpace. I realized: 1. That "In Her Hands" is "curatorial activism" and 2. Maybe my feeling of running in place for 30 years has something to do with me being a woman in the art world, but there is no way of knowing. Maybe I've just been making bad work - or whatever. And that's the thing about sexism, it can go undetected for years because it's easy to think "Maybe it's just me." But, maybe it is! Ugh.
Anyhow, I'm sure I'll never stop making art and I'll never stop being and activist. I've been making the best work of my life, if it's not critically acclaimed I can deal with that. I have what feels like a million ideas that I need to get out.