Exquisite Arts Magazine Vol 7: Fall Issue- Oct/2017 | Page 26
nature of the spider which helps mankind by eating mosquitoes and other pests for us. Maman also closely
protects a sack of marble eggs, further displaying an ode to Bourgeois’ own protective and strong mother who
died suddenly when she was 21.
Lyubov Popova, Painting
One of the most well regarded Russian painters of her time, Lyubov Popova was
one of the first female painters to work in Cubo-Futurism, a style that is derived of
sharp lines and geometric shapes, worked together to create form. She had
started formal art lessons in her home as a child, something her father was
immensely proud of as he was fond of the arts and she was wildly encouraged to
find her own style and make painting her own.
When she was 18 she studied art with Stanislav Zhukovsky and in 1908 began
studying in the private studios of acclaimed painters Konstantin Yuon and Ivan Dudin. She had grown up with a
preferred interest in Italian Renaissance painting but soon was attending the galleries of well known cubist
painters such as Jean Metzinger.
Lyubov Popova traveled extensively to gain a larger understanding of various techniques and styles but was
eventually drawn to cubism and what eventually became known as Suprematism, a form of art that supported the
the growing revolutionary thought and desire to remake the world following the Russian Revolution. She travelled
through Ukraine, Poland and to France. She was known for having friends in many artistic circles and by the time
she unfortunately died of scarlet fever at the after of 35, her work had been displayed in several galleries and
different shows. Her older brother became the steward of her artistic legacy after her death in 1924.
Adrian Piper, Performance
Adrian Piper’s performance art is some of her most unique and in your
face. In the 1970s she developed a street performance piece known as
Catalysis where she would behave and act in ways that were contrary to
the societal norms. It was meant to be the catalyst of where these norms
were challenged and questioned. The actions she displayed involved
wearing clothing that had been covered in vinegar, eggs and cod liver oil
and then using the subway and going into bookstores over the period of
a week. She also would go into places of quietness such as a museum
with a purse full of ketchup and chew gum loudly.
In 1973 her work Mythic Being featured her dressing up in men’s clothing including facial hair and acting as though
she were an overly hostile immigrant male from a developing country, challenging views towards racism and how
many people in the 70s dealt with immigrants on a daily basis.
In an 1986 piece entitled Calling Card she would roam the streets and hand out calling cards to those people she
found making racist comments in public and an act of “calling them out” on their behaviours. Much of her work
dealt with bringing to light the casual passing racism that our world portrayed and still portrays daily.
There are so many subversive female artists that have worked throughout the last hundred years or more to pave
the way for our artistic endeavours today. From some of the bold pioneers Lyubov Popova to Francesca
Woodman and beyond, these women have all pushed the boundaries of what is considered to be ladylike and
proper in their individual times, often using their unique perspectives of the world to break into what were then
industries dominated by men.