Wednesday, October 27, 2021

Art Exhibition at Residential College Examines Gender

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A group of female artists from the University of Mississippi Department of Art and Art History will bring a wide range of artistic media to a new exhibit showing in Residential College South through April 3.

“Feminine Cartographies,” curated by Brooke White, associate professor of art, features artists Desiree Kapler, Hailey Hodge, Elise Robbins, Whitney Turnipseed, Callie Nutt and Emma Wilson. The exhibition has given the students a platform to exhibit and discuss their work in a new context. Through painting, printmaking, photography and sculpture, each student directly or indirectly deals with the female gender.

“This show brings together a wide range of artistic styles from undergraduate and graduate art students,” White said. “As a curator, I saw elements in their work that dealt with the topic of gender, and I chose the work because of that.”

Hailey Hodge, a Master of Fine Art candidate in printmaking, has offered a sample of her current work, which is part of a larger project that analyzes a woman’s life story and how she dealt with depression. Hodge’s work elegantly portrays the progression of feminism through the female figures represented in her prints.

“Feminism is a broad study on women and their experiences,” Hodge said. “My work discusses the challenges women have had to endure over time.”

Female bodies are portrayed a variety of ways in art. When the female figure becomes the subject of an artistic work, it is examined as flesh and blood, mother, sister, daughter, alluring, dignified, scarred, strong and, most importantly, equal.

“It is critical to look at and examine gender roles in our society because they are always in a state of flux, and art is a great vehicle for that critique,” White said. “Throughout the history of art, artists, both male and female, have made work in response to the role, characteristics and activities that define what it means to be male or female.”

Artists working in this genre are able to question societal pressures and roles that are placed upon them, she said. The artists in this exhibition continue this tradition by using art as a way to examine the relationships between gender and society, White said.

A reception honoring the artists is set for 5 p.m. March 26.

Courtesy UM Communications

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