Elizabeth A. Sackler Center for Feminist Art
In textiles, dégradé refers to the diminution of a fabric’s color when a dye fades from dark to light. In Heather’s Dégradé, Ghada Amer depicts women who seem to be in a state of dégradé, the outlines of their bodies, in explicit poses often culled from pornography, almost dissolving into overlapping forms that appear at a distance as an abstraction. Her choice of words is also a play on women’s “degradation” by the act of sex—traditionally thought to downgrade the social value of women—here depicted with pleasure and sensuousness. Amer’s choice of thread as a medium is a nod to the devaluation of sewing as “women’s work,” as well as to the modern perception that “craft,” as the production of those who labor for a living, has less intrinsic value than “fine” art.
Embroidery and gel medium on canvas
78 x 62 x 1 1/2 in. (198.1 x 157.5 x 3.8 cm) (show scale)
Signed in pencil on lower left edge of canvas: "Ghada Amer 06"
This item is not on view
Frank L. Babbott Fund, Mary Smith Dorward Fund, William K. Jacobs, Jr. Fund, and Florence B. and Carl L. Selden Fund
© Ghada Amer
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Ghada Amer (American, born Egypt, 1963). Heather's Dégradé, 2006. Embroidery and gel medium on canvas, 78 x 62 x 1 1/2 in. (198.1 x 157.5 x 3.8 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Frank L. Babbott Fund, Mary Smith Dorward Fund, William K. Jacobs, Jr. Fund, and Florence B. and Carl L. Selden Fund, 2013.50.1. © artist or artist's estate (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, 2013.50.1_PS9.jpg)
overall, 2013.50.1_PS9.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph, 2013
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