Curator Regine Basha’s Mark of the Feminine is the first in a series of exhibitions to be produced by the CAC focusing on the remarkable community of artists working in New Orleans. The 2014 exhibition, on view in the CAC’s Lupin Foundation Gallery from August 2 – October 4, 2014, features works by a selection of multigenerational female and female-identifying contemporary artists working in a variety of mediums.
The CAC thanks all of the talented artists who participated in this year’s submission process. Chosen from an outstanding pool of over 340 entries, the CAC is thrilled to announce the artists selected for this landmark exhibition:
Nina Schwanse & Sophie T. Lvoff
Mary Lou Uttermohlen
Sroll down for more information about these artists.
Curatorial Statement from Regine Basha
Putting out a call to New Orleans’s women artists to apply to Mark of the Feminine wasn’t necessarily meant to remedy a lack of visibility of female artists in New Orleans, but was meant to seek out and reaffirm the strength and diversity of women artists working in New Orleans at this time. It was my conviction that the women artists of this region are holders of culture and continuity and who thrive by a deep-seated resilience that ultimately makes New Orleans so singular in this country. It was important to also honor artists who are both embracing and/or questioning their femininity in individual ways that break open our stereotypes of what ‘feminine’ is as a quality. With this in mind, the call asked for participation from those artists who might identify as female or a female-in-transition and encouraged applying artists who wished to make their own positions known or more clear, to do so in their applications. Therefore, the Mark of the ‘Feminine’ is not necessarily a narrative theme show, or a feminist manifesto, but more like a question about the term itself, posed to the artists of New Orleans.
What becomes immediately evident in the work brought together for Mark of the Feminine, is how the vantage point of the ‘feminine,’ in its full spectrum, speaks to a timeless yet ever-evolving, set of greater human concerns affecting our society at large. Poignant reflections on loss, the complexities of motherhood, female stereotypes or marriage, encounters with violence and renewal, as well as explorations of sexuality and eroticism—are all explored with either poignant candor or insightful humor.
Mark of the Feminine purposefully mingles generations as well as the various genres of art-making. Vernacular craft and ritual-based work co-exists with newer emerging media in contemporary art, to offer a productive ‘contamination’ from one to another. This seemed relevant to how I viewed New Orleans’s art ecosystem in general. Some works are purely visionary and abstract while others—such as in photography—capture the grim social realism of local figures or street scenes. All in all the work is undoubtedly rooted in its place and context and engenders a kaleidoscopic view of artists committed to making work in New Orleans today.
About the Curator
Since 1993, Regine Basha has been curating innovative exhibitions for public institutions, civic spaces, magazines, and private galleries nationally and internationally.
Basha was born in Israel to Iraqi parents. She grew up in Montreal and Los Angeles; attended New York University and Concordia University (Studio Art and Art History); and graduated from Bard College, Center for Curatorial Studies’ inaugural class of 1996. She was adjunct curator to Arthouse in Austin, TX from 2002 – 2008 and ran the Art Gallery of the Saidye Bronfman Centre in Montreal from 1991 – 1995.
Her exhibitions have received grant awards from The Andy Warhol Foundation, The Elizabeth Firestone Graham Foundation, and The National Endowment for the Arts as well as critical press in The New York Times, Artforum, Modern Painters, Art Papers, Wire, Bidoun, Art Lies, Artforum, and on NPR Radio. She currently sits on the board of Art Matters and Aurora Picture Show.
Basha’s exhibition history can be found on www.bashaprojects.com