Seductive Subversion: Women Pop Artists, 1958–1968, is the first major exhibition to explore in depth the contributions of female Pop artists and seeks to expand the definition of classic Pop art and re-evaluate the role of the women who worked alongside the movement’s more famous male practitioners.
It features more than fifty works by Pop art’s most significant female artists and includes many pieces that have not been shown in nearly forty years.
Although radical social changes were taking place in America in the 1960s, the female Pop artists of the time remained largely unacknowledged by the contemporary art critics and academics. Relegated to the margins of history by discrimination, historical precedent, and social expectations, these women were forced to take a back seat to their male counterparts, who became icons of the era. Informed by their personal histories, the work of female Pop artists was often collaborative and incorporated empathetic social commentary.
Seductive Subversion includes Marisol’s John Wayne sculpture, commissioned by Life magazine for an issue on movies; the French sculptor, painter, and filmmaker Niki de Saint Phalle’s eight-foot-tall Black Rosy, one of her “Nana” sculptures exploring the role of women; Rosalyn Drexler’s oil and acrylic work Chubby Checker, inspired by the poster for the movie Twist around the Clock, and Home Movies, based on frames from old gangster movies; the Times Square–inspired Ampersand, a multilayered, stylized, and illuminated neon ampersand in a Plexiglas cube by Chryssa, one of the first artists to utilize neon in her work; and a seventeen-foot-long triptych by Idelle Weber.
Seductive Subversion: Women Pop Artists, 1958–1968 will be on view at the Brooklyn Museum of Art beginning October 15, 2010 and will run through January 9, 2011.