Objects of MUSEARI
She Didn’t Call It Home, But It’s All She Had.
Gender and the body
Gender and attire
Natividad Navalón is an interdisciplinary Spanish artist who has contributed to contemporary conceptual art in the areas of sculpture, photography and installations. She balances the time she devotes to creation with teaching, in her position as Projects Course Director at the School of Fine Arts, Universitat Politècnica de València. Her work depicts the female narrative, approaching themes that address the process of female identity and drawing particular attention to the unwritten legacy passed down from mothers to daughters.
It likewise highlights the commitment to recover a sphere that has always been denied to women. The artistic work of Natividad Navalón is present in influential contemporary art collections, and offers a reflection on feelings and emotions as a common element, in line with feminist discourse and contemporary women’s narrative. As her work has evolved it has continued to preserve its symbolic character, but from a broader perspective that is intimately linked to the female experience. In her series “Sin pedir perdón” (No Apologies), she explores female archetypes, experimenting with the medium of sculpture using materials from the textile industry.
Ways of Washing
This work by Olga Olivera looks at ways of washing, although they are actually studies on hygiene and the care we give to our own bodies, which in turn involves much more complex actions and procedures on a social level – actions which must be deconstructed. The social hygiene movement of the 19th century, modeled after the paradigms of purported scientific credibility, linked hygiene with morals. This model promoted not only bodily hygiene, but a single model of acceptable behavior as well. A hygienic life emphasized the acceptance of the model of a religious, white, heterosexual and monogamous family, with sexuality existing for reproductive purposes only, and where any deviation from this norm was considered unclean. Under the umbrella of these ideologies, which were socially accepted by a large part of society and which have continued to a certain extent to the present day, a social model was constructed based on social exclusion. The concept of hygiene was used to justify a single family model -the heterosexual family-, social classes and hierarchy. This became a visible and distinguishing characteristic that discriminated working individuals from the unemployed, and natives from foreigners. Under the auspices of hygiene, the movement also justified certain racist behavior by associating brown or black with bodily uncleanliness.
The N340 Globalfem project, work of artist Ana Navarrete, utilizes different mediums (video table, maps, visual essays, audio, websites, database) to pose a series of interrelated issues dealing with global economic policy and contemporary female migration. The N-340 road is a major highway for transporting goods and people: a landmark for businesses, services and brothels. This road is a living example of how women’s bodies are treated as merchandise that draws enormous profits, playing an important role in the production and reproduction of globalized capitalism. Artist, researcher and teacher at the Universidad de Castilla-La Mancha, Navarrete’s academic specialization focuses on cultural practices of resistance related to social movements and issues, as well as on an analysis of gender identity and violence against women. She is currently head researcher of the AEMA R&D&I project (Spanish Media Art Archive), which is devoted to the conservation of new media art.
The multifaceted artist and intellectual Pilar Viviente works through music and bodily expression. For some time her work has focused on the concept of “rodete” (wheel-like coils worn on either side of the head), a popular element of the headdresses worn by Iberian women. Her work for Museari includes two projects: works from the “Spanish Sketches” series, combined with others from the “Rodetes” series (Wheels that are Eyes). This pairing concept has been shown for the first time at Museari. This professor of Fine Arts from the Universidad Miguel Hernández is a multidisciplinary artist who belongs to the so-called Reflexive Generation (late 80s, early 90s). She has participated in more than one hundred national and international exhibitions. Her work can be found in the permanent collections of museums around the world.
Tálamo Performance, performed in Fortaleza, Brazil
Gender and ethnicity
If feminism is to liberate women, it must virtually tackle all forms of oppression. From this perspective we can say that black feminism, created within the context of multi-racial, multi-cultural and racist communities such as are found in Latin American societies, revolves predominantly around racism and the impact it has on gender relations as a determining factor in societal gender hierarchies. In general terms, unity in the struggle of women in today’s society does not depend solely on our ability to overcome inequalities created by a historically masculine hegemony, but rather calls for society to overcome related ideologies such as racism. Racism establishes the social inferiority of the black segments of the population in general, and of black women in particular, and acts as a divisive factor in the struggle for privileges that have been traditionally reserved for white women. From this perspective, the opposition of black women to gender and race oppression works to create new profiles for feminist and anti-racist political action, enriching both racial and gender discourse.
O.R.G.I.A., Is There No Place for Dykes in Beni?
Gender and tourism
O.R.G.I.A.’s work entitled “Fucking the City, Vol III” redefines the city as a sexual amusement park for the “invader”, reversing the dichotomies of active-passive, public-private and masculine-feminine. In the piece entitled “Autoerótica”, we see the skyline of Benidorm and the iconic Intempo building in an adventure that is part nighttime bender, part witches’ Sabbath. Introduced into this peculiar scene is a trio of characters from yesterday, today and tomorrow, representative of the Benidorm nightlife. Drive and desire are yet again the motivating force behind the chaos and disequilibrium of the characteristic system of urban appearances. Fucking the City is an ongoing project that aims to gradually question the heterocentric and typically bourgeois conduct present in western cities. By virtue of unexpected modifications of scale and the hybridization of technical iconography and pulp, the aim is to present a quasi-alien and hypersexual invasion of public urban spaces. By means of the giant-monster archetype, the project aims to interchange the symbolic values of a certain type of architecture (phallic), as well as redesign certain spaces (others), such as fountains, etc. The city is thus redefined as a sexual playground for the “invader”, where the active-passive / public-private / masculine-feminine dichotomies are reversed, and where drive and desire become the motivating forces behind chaos and disequilibrium, turning the typical game of urban appearances on its head.
We are a Lost Hope
The markedly conceptual creative and artistic trajectory of Yolanda Herranz is expressed in art projects that have been shown in more than two hundred exhibits throughout Europe (Germany, Austria, Belgium, Spain, Greece, Iceland, Italy, Lithuania, Luxemburg, Norway, Poland, Portugal, the United Kingdom, Switzerland) and America (Argentina, Canada, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Brazil, Nicaragua, USA), as well as in Russia and Japan. Her work is also represented in prestigious museums and institutions around the world. The uncertainty expressed in her images remains unresolved, and all of the figures retain an element of underlying tension, of indecisive and irreconcilable dilemma. We doubt and we feel. We question and we conceive. Blackness tattooed on our soul. The body is frail, beauty is fleeting, the flesh is vulnerable and transient. Emerging from the intensity of The Dark, appears the light that delineates our traits. The penetrating abyss shelters a dim radiance that shines through, outlining a glimpse of our countenance. Light and twilight, specters of the spirit.