American women have been fighting tirelessly for recognition and equality in America and it hasn’t always been easy. But this month, the Untitled Space gallery in Tribeca is currently presenting She Inspires, an exhibition celebrating inspirational female figures who have helped shape our past and present and will help shape our future. The show includes work by 60 contemporary artists working with various types of media depicting feminine power. Some artists use examples of real women while others capture various aspects of the female spirit. The gallery is further helping more women to make a difference as 10 percent of the proceeds from the show go toward the non-profit organization She Should Run to help women run for government.
One piece that effectively captures feminine power as well as patriotism is a collage by Cabell Molina entitled American Woman. The collage is composed of 100, one-hundred dollar bills each with the face of an influential woman. The bills have been painted over in red, white, and blue to resemble the American flag. The women featured on these bills include women in politics like Hillary Clinton, Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, and Michelle Obama, talk show hosts like Oprah Winfrey, Whoopi Goldberg, and Ellen DeGeneres, and pop culture icons and entertainers like Marilyn Monroe, Audrey Hepburn, Betty White, and Mary Tyler Moore among many others.
A large-scale sculpture entitled Flower Girl Josephine Baker by Maria Petrovskaya is brimming with vibrancy and represents the legendary French, African-American entertainer and Civil Rights Activist Josephine Baker. Petrovskaya’s piece is made from wire covered with electric blue, red, and yellow aluminum foil and depicts Ms. Baker wearing a mini-skirt and crown made from flowers.
Another piece that stands out is a piece installed on the gallery’s wall by Cristin Millet entitled Sever: Agatha’s Offering. Inspired by St. Agatha, the Patron Saint of breast cancer, the sculpture depicts a couple of wooden hands emerging from moss with one had holding a wooden tray with two stone pieces representing breasts; one of them is plump and round while the other is flatter and has a more lopsided shape as the other hand reaches above it to pick it up. Also of note are two embroidered portraits by Jess De Wahls entitled Life is Beautiful That Way representing Mexican painter Frida Kahlo and Angela Davis representing the prominent 1960s Civil Rights Activist. Gallery owner, curator, and artist Indira Cesarine has also contributed work in the show including the black and white painting Arrested for Equality: An Ode to the Suffragettes which features two women in agony as they’re constrained by several policemen who arrest them for protesting for women’s suffrage.
At Untitled Space, 45 Lispenard St., Unit 1W, through May 26. The gallery is open weekdays from 10-6 p.m. and weekends from 12-5 p.m.