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While spiders may be threatening creatures to many people, for Louise Bourgeois they represent a nurturing quality that she associates with her mother. In a maternal fashion, the spider weaves a perfect web that serves as a protective barrier and provides food. For Bourgeois, the spider also suggests the patience and industriousness that served her mother well as a skilled weaver in the family business of tapestry restoration. Thus, the image of the spider is capable of evoking both threat and tenderness; such a meeting of supposed opposites or a reconciliation of conflicting or even contradictory states is one of the most characteristic features of Louise Bourgeois’s art.
- Artist: Louise Bourgeois, French-American, 1911-2010
- Printers: Carol Weaver; Felix Harlan
- Publisher: Harlan and Weaver Intaglio
- Medium: Drypoint
- Dates: 2001
- Dimensions: Sheet: 19 x 16 in. (48.3 x 40.6 cm) (show scale)
- Signature: Signed lower right in graphite: "Louise Bourgeois 2001"
- Inscriptions: Inscribed lower left: "13/25
- Collections:Contemporary Art
- Museum Location: This item is not on view
- Accession Number: 2003.14
- Edition: Edition: 13/25. Edition of 25, plus BAT, 7 AP, 5 PP.
- Credit Line: Robert A. Levinson Fund
- Rights Statement: © artist or artist's estate
- Caption: Louise Bourgeois (French-American, 1911-2010). Hairy Spider, 2001. Drypoint, Sheet: 19 x 16 in. (48.3 x 40.6 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Robert A. Levinson Fund, 2003.14. © artist or artist's estate
- Record Completeness: Good (65%)