FRANCESCA WOODMAN & BIRGIT JÜRGENSSEN
Duration: 27 June - 20 September 2015
Artist: Francesca Woodman, Birgit Jürgenssen
Curator: Gabriele Schor
For the first time, Merano arte presents a double exhibition of works by the Italo-American artist Francesca Woodman (1958 – 1981) and the Austrian artist Birgit Jürgenssen (1949 – 2003). This is the second cooperation project between MERANO ARTE and SAMMLUNG VERBUND, the first one having been the presentation of the early works of Cindy Sherman
From an aesthetic as well as a conceptual point of view, the works of Woodman and Jürgenssen belong to the "feminist avant-garde“ of the 1970s, a term coined by the director of SAMMLUNG VERBUND, Gabriele Schor. Although the two artists did not know each other personally, there are many parallels in their works: the staging of the subject, the infirmity of human existence, and above all a critical view of the female body in art. Both artists took their performative photographs themselves in their own studios, using a self-timer. Surrealism as an emancipatory method is a main source of their artistic expression. Woodman and Jürgenssen are pioneers of the "poetic-performative feminism of the 19703. In their works, they consciously use the female body as a formal tool, thus creating a new image of womanhood. As both artists decided to use their naked bodies, they autonomously defined the female body neither as 'nature' nor as a 'sexual object', but as a 'work of art'.