The “window gallery” Kunsthalle LAB of the Dom umenia/Kunsthalle Bratislava is to host a new exhibition on feminism – an issue that still remains current and rather sensitive within contemporary art. The opening of the exhibition organized as part of the zero year of the festival FestFem will be held on Thursday, July 16th 2015, from 6 to 8pm. The exhibition will run until September 6th 2015.
According to curator Lenka Kukurová, the project Fem(inist) Fatale is a “response to the current state of our society through art”. Entitled ironically, it addresses the notion of “femme fatale” as one of many symbolic gender clichés. However, the word fatal in its meaning no longer connotes a seductive woman, existing primarily for men to look at, but rather hints to feminism as a political and personal attitude. This “fatal perspective” can shift the perception of common reality in a way that it will no longer seem neutral in terms of power.
Despite several separate artistic and institutional activities thematically related to feminism, the Fem(inist) Fatale project is the first group exhibition in Slovakia that openly subscribes to its feminist background. “I consider myself a feminist. It is the only “–ism” I am able to identify myself with unconditionally,” says Anna Daučíková, one of the participating authors. The selection of artists presented at the exhibition is based upon their former cooperation with the feminist culture magazine Aspekt and the eponymous educational and publishing organization, as well as the gender-oriented magazine Glosolália. To prove that feminism is not exclusive to women, the list of exhibited artists includes male author Milan Mikuláštik: “Given that gender inequalities still remain a sad reality within our society, I consider it totally natural to be a feminist. I even think that being one is an obligation if I want to call myself a democratically-minded person. I only find it beneficial when men openly subscribe to feminism.”
If we think about the way the status of women has changed in our society over the last decades, we can certainly talk about some great shifts. At first glance it might seem that we live in a society with equal rights for all – and the vast majority certainly believes so. What’s the point of bringing back the notion of feminism, then? The artworks presented by the exhibition Fem(inist) Fatale seek answers to this and other questions. Artists respond to current issues related to feminism through various subject matters including gender roles, non-heterosexual identities, the absence of heroines in history, and the traditional family – an issue that still remains very current.
The exhibition will be accompanied by various side events including discussions, lectures, a theatrical production, and public readings, each focused on different forms of feminist and gender research (from the perspective of art history, social sciences, philosophy, etc.). Thus, the exhibition Fem(inist) Fatale aspires to serve as a contribution to feminist disputes about art and the current social situation.
Curator: Lenka Kukurová
Artists: Jana Bodnárová, Petra Cízková, Mária Corejová, Anna Daučíková, Lucia Dovičáková, Eva Filová, Milan Mikuláštík, Martin Piaček, Ivana Sáteková, Jana Stepánová
In co-operation with: Lenka Krištofová and ASPEKT
July 17th – September 6th 2015
Kunsthalle LAB, Bratislava