Friday, January 21, 2011

Gender in Art

I went to meet Terry at the Orlando Museum of Art for a discussion about the new exhibit at the museum which focuses on Gender in Art. There was a wonderful spread with Salmon, spinach dip , crackers, chips and deserts. A fairly large crowd filled the central atrium with the blue Chihuly chandelier. As I was eating I noticed that another crowd had gathered in the central gallery. No food was allowed inside so I gulped down my soda and crackers and dashed inside. A woman was giving a talk and she moved people around the room explaining the art. There was a Warhol print of Marilyn Monroe and some paintings of women throughout the ages. There was a long line of women's slips suspended from the ceiling presumably to hint at a woman's closet being a work of art. A small fabric doll from china had bright gold beads and pins sewn on one side and the other side had black beads in an intricate pattern. This was supposed to indicate how women are perceived and then how they are actually treated.

I sat opposite this wedding dress created by LesleyDillin. The dress is made from acrylic and thread on a mannequin. In 1994 this dress was worn by a model who read the Emily Dickenson poem, "The Soul has Bandaged Moments." The poem is written all over the dress in bold black paint. As the model read, she ripped the dress off, shredding it to pieces. Lesley later sewed the pieces back together with black thread.

The Soul has Bandaged moments -
When too appalled to stir -
She feels some ghastly Fright come up
And stop to look at her -

Salute her - with long fingers -
Caress her freezing hair -
Sip, Goblin, from the very lips
The Lover - hovered - o'er -
Unworthy, that a thought so mean
Accost a Theme - so - fair -

The soul has moments of Escape -
When bursting all the doors -
She dances like a Bomb, abroad,
And swings upon the Hours,

As do the Bee - delirious borne -
Long Dungeoned from his Rose -
Touch Liberty - then know no more,
But Noon, and Paradise -

The Soul's retaken moments -
When, Felon led along,
With shackles on the plumed feet,
And staples, in the Song,

The Horror welcomes her, again,
These, are not brayed of Tongue -

- Emily Dickenson

1 comment:

Bess said...

I love Dickinson and always find her poetry so remarkably relevant and timeless, especially given the life she led. Thanks for sharing.