The Art of Mary Beth Edelson

(Mary Beth Edelson, Double Agent, 2000. Courtesy of the Artist).

With so much phenomenal attention on feminist art these days, its important to acknowledge that many of the women who rose to fame in the 1960s and 1970s continue to produce stellar work today. An artist that exemplifies this concept is Mary Beth Edelson, a prominent figure in the 1970s feminist art movement, and a pioneer in the reclamation of Goddess imagery alongside Ana Mendieta, Hannah Wilke, and others. Edelson is best known for photographing her body in re-arrangements of mythic or ritualistic poses, photographs which she drew on or collaged in a gesture of playful defiance. By contrast, some of her recent works appropriate images of women and femme fatales from Old Hollywood movies and film noir, and re-present them on objects in the home, such as doors, curtains, bedspreads, and pillows. While these works are a departure from her earlier Goddess photographs and performances, they preserve Edelson’s playful, pop culture inflected feminist sensibility, and remind us that a woman’s work is never done.

(Mary Beth Edelson, Woman Rising, 1974. Courtesy of the Artist).

See Mary Beth Edelson discuss more of her recent and early works at the Brooklyn Museum on Saturday. For more information please click here.