What makes art 'feminist art'? Although feminist artists do have a unique aesthetic, there can be no essential feminist aesthetic, argues Kathy Battista in this exciting new art history. Domesticity, the body, its traces and sexuality have become prominent themes in contemporary feminist practice but where did these preoccupations begin and how did they come to signify a particular type of art?
As connections between 1970s artists and contemporary female practitioners are not usually consciously acknowledged, one of the central aims of this book is to reconnect current art practice with earlier, groundbreaking works. Primarily concerned with the feminist body as a site for making and exhibiting works, this book examines themes that look at the body as material, the body and performance, as well as the alternative creative platforms in 1970s feminist art.
Kathy Battista's (re-)engagement with the founding generation of female practitioners centres on 1970s London as the cultural hub from which a new art practice arose.
Emphasising the importance of artists including Bobby Baker, Anne Bean, Catherine Elwes, Rose English, Alexis Hunter, Tina Keane, Hannah O'Shea, Kate Walker and Silvia Ziranek and examining works such as Mary Kelly'sPost-Partum Document, Judy Clark's 1973 exhibitionIssues, Carolee Schneemann'sMeat Joyand Cosey Fanni Tutti'sProstitution, shown in 1976, Kathy Battista investigates some of the most controversial and provocative art from the era.
I.B.Tauris, 2012. Paperback, 224 pages, black and white images throughout. 15.6 x 23.4 cm