Let’s get the obvious out of the way: the #metoo and #timesup movements are well overdue and are doing much to highlight challenges faced by women. It’s incredibly empowering as women to have our voices heard loud and clear and to see women’s rights and equality take a key position at the forefront of social issues. That being said, we as women are tough, resilient, brilliant and powerful – and always have been. That’s no different for women artists, who throughout the centuries – from Artemisia Gentileschi to Mary Cassatt, Ana Mendieta to Nicole Eisenmann- have continued to innovate and push artistic boundaries for generation after generation.
Then She Did echoes this heritage of resilient and creative women, rising to the occasion and honoring contemporary women artists in its dazzling display of artworks transcending definitive style, period, or subject matter while paying homage to those women who have come before and inspired us. The exhibition instead offers a tightly curated array of formats and philosophies bridging various mediums and featuring women artists working today who are redefining contemporary art in NYC and beyond. From painting and photography to sculpture and new media, women artists continue to innovate and push boundaries in their respective practices, as evidenced in work by Swoon, Vahge, Allison Sommers, Lady Pink, Alice Mizrachi, Alexandra Momin, and many more. The works on view show that conceptually and aesthetically masterful artworks span a range of genres and subject matter: as the curators, note the artists take us on “a journey through the personal revolutions of everyday women in America.” Through diversity, the strength of work produced by women artists today is reinforced.
Swoon’s delightfully expressive figures adorn the gallery floor, while influential photographer Janette Beckman’s intersectional black & white street portraits reinforce the notion of powerful women taking charge of their destiny. Marne Lucas, an interdisciplinary artist, showcases a futuristic, hybridized version of femininity in her striking portraits. Allison Sommers’ poignant mixed media work cleverly disassembles attitudes toward “feminine”. Alice Mizrachi’s mixed media artwork meditates on the divinity of women while, nearby, Alexandra Momin’s artwork is a riotous, colorful abstract photo composite investigating how we process what we view. Vahge’s work takes a collage-like approach to portraying women in lush interiors, emphasizing aesthetic beauty. In contrast, the clever work of Joanne Leah relies on a close-up focus on parts of women’s bodies to comment on objectification in colorful Pop compositions.
Then She Did is that rare gallery show that surveys a contemporary moment in time, bringing a wide array of talent into the same room to showcase their brilliance. Be sure not to miss the exhibition, curated by Lori Zimmer and Melissa McCaig-Welles at Plaxall Gallery, 5-25 46th Ave, Long Island City up through April 7, 2018. More information on the exhibition is available on the event page.