Tuesday, May 12, 2009


Quite by accident I found an article from The Guardian by Germaine Greer dealing with the scarcity of women in art. She has an interesting theory, quoted below, while the whole article can be found here.
Eventually I arrived at a theory, which I offer for consideration. It goes like this: women, being generally more rational than men, are aware that life is more important than art. This is simple logic: art is a part of life, therefore art cannot be greater than life. Since the Romantic period and the rise of the concept of artist as Ubermensch, the male artist has been led to believe that, if he is to be a serious artist, he must regard his work as of supreme importance, immutable, unchanging, defying time. Therefore, as Marcel Duchamp never tired of saying, the most important element in a picture is its frame; in a sculpture, its plinth. The frame/plinth is what detaches the work of art from the rest of the world. That separateness is further reinforced by the sacred enclosure that surrounds the work - the art gallery, the museum, where nothing may be touched by mere mortals. The work is therefore defined as non-biodegradable, even as conservators struggle to reverse the ineluctable processes of decay.

I would be very interested in your comments, either here or as more usual for me, in email. I love to hear from you. Yup, even if you disagree!


Deb said...

I wonder why she strayed off to ponder the nature of decay? I would go on to say something about how easy it is to snooker certain males with a conceit like imagining that their participation in the act of creating Art somehow earned them Godessness.

It's the opposite of penis envy - there must be a name for the envy men feel over a woman's ability to produce the perfect creation right straight out of their bodies with onlynegligible assistance from anything with a penis.

Anonymous said...

Heroic pointlessness. Thats what we do according to Germaine Greer


Enjoy the read.