Archives mensuelles : juin 2015

« Chitra Ganesh: Eyes of Time » au Brooklyn Museum jusqu’au 12 juillet

Chitra Ganesh (American, born 1975). Eyes of Time (detail), 2014. Mixed-media wall mural. Courtesy of the artist and Gallery Wendi Norris, San Francisco. © Chitra Ganesh. Photo: Jonathan Dorado, Brooklyn Museum

Chitra Ganesh (American, born 1975). Eyes of Time (detail), 2014. Mixed-media wall mural. Courtesy of the artist and Gallery Wendi Norris, San Francisco. © Chitra Ganesh. Photo: Jonathan Dorado, Brooklyn Museum


December 12, 2014–July 12, 2015


Elizabeth A. Sackler Center for Feminist Art, Herstory Gallery, 4th Floor

Exploring ideas of femininity, empowerment, and multiplicity, Brooklyn-based artist Chitra Ganesh draws inspiration from the Museum’s encyclopedic collection, including representations of the goddess Kali, to create a site-specific multimedia installation for the Herstory Gallery.


Chitra Ganesh: Eyes of Time centers on a monumental mural that takes Kali, the Hindu goddess of destruction and rebirth, and other figures from Judy’s Chicago’s The Dinner Party as starting points for portraying female power and plurality. The artist expands on this theme by showcasing works from our Egyptian, Indian, and Contemporary collections.


For more than a decade, Ganesh has used the iconography of mythology, literature, and popular culture to bring to light feminist and queer narratives. One of her first major works,Tales of Amnesia (2002)—a zine inspired by Indian comic books that the Museum acquired out of our 2004 exhibitionOpen House: Working in Brooklyn—is also on view.


Chitra Ganesh: Eyes of Time is organized by Saisha Grayson, Assistant Curator, Elizabeth A. Sackler Center for Feminist Art, Brooklyn Museum.


This exhibition is made possible by the Elizabeth A. Sackler Foundation.



« Dyke 88 l San Francisco » : un projet de documentaire sur la scène lesbienne des années 1980 à San Francisco à soutenir en ligne



DYKE ’88 | San Francisco

A feature length documentary by Lulu Belliveau


1988 was the year the San Francisco dyke scene exploded.


This was our city, these are our stories. It’s time to tell them.


In the late 80’s a new generation of lesbian was emerging – loud, proud and in-yer-face. Exciting new clubs like Female Trouble and Club Q were serving up their own sound and style. Women were picking up instruments and forming bands, getting political out on the streets, and playing with fashion, creating an identifiable dyke style. Sex was our strength, our protection, and our pride as we posed naked, stripped and danced our way into empowerment for a new decade. We had witnessed the devastating impact of the AIDS crisis on the gay men’s community and we responded, not only demonstrating on the streets, but creating art and performance to try to make sense of our grief and anger.


From all over the USA and around the world, women were hearing about the San Francisco women’s scene and came to visit, many who ended up making the Bay Area home. The influence of that era lingers on in every radical edge of queer culture today.


I want to make this documentary because I was there, I was a part of it. This is my San Francisco. The women making the spaces, the music, dancing in the clubs, creating the magazines & images, and rioting in the streets – they are my friends. Our memories, our stories, our lives, are in important piece of our queer history and it’s time for that story to be told.




Focusing on the year 1988, Dyke ’88 | San Francisco will document the City’s lesbian culture in the late 80’s and early 90’s, told through the voices of people who were there. Interviews, brought together with original music, archival video footage, photographs and the wonderful ephemera of the day, creating a vision of what it was like to be lesbian in San Francisco in those heady days. It was a magic time in the Bay Area, a time filled with extremes – joy, sadness, creativity, grief, anger, love and above all, friendship.


It was the edge of an era. A time forgotten.


Studying for my degree, I have spent countless hours researching this past but find so very little recorded about our queer lives, specifically these years in San Francisco. Rarer still are profiles of the people who created the spaces – magazines, zines, clubs, activist groups – where this culture was nurtured. I particularly want to celebrate the women who created those spaces.


This was an age before the internet and social media. Before digital music and film. Gathering the stories is the simple part, it involves connecting and catching up with old friends, which is always a joy. Collecting the images, the music, the videos – this is going to take hard work and the generosity of those friends.


Please help me find that ephemera – it’s even more important than the money.




Camera, lighting & sound crew, graphic design, research assistant and transcription. Licensing rights to photographs, videos and music. Any additional camera & sound equipment costs, plus location, lighting, set, tape stock, transfers, etc.


Kickstarter fees, charges, rewards and postage.


This budget does NOT include Editor and post production!


So far my partner, Ele and I have financed the research, travel, camera & sound equipment, and legal fees. This campaign will be the difference between being able to have crew or not. Any funds raised and not used on the shoot will go towards post production.


I AM LAUNCHING THIS WHILE WE ARE IN CALIFORNIA SHOOTING. I will be in SF June 11 – July 3, then LA until July 15th. I will be interviewing and collecting archival material. If you can help, please get in touch!


I know that I will need more cash. We hope to raise matching funds privately and (please please please) I hope that this campaign will exceed it’s goal. I do not want to raise the goal as I don’t want to take the chance that it won’t be successful! This campaign is in British pounds which is around a 2/3 exchange. So in $US I am looking for $30k.


I would also like to be able to pay a researcher to continue the work gathering photographs & ephemera in SF after we’ve left. Music is another important link in the story – finding the artists and paying for rights is another time and money consuming affair. Much of this I can do online, but nothing replaces people with their eyes and ears, and ability to communicate and make aesthetic judgement.


I plan to edit in the fall for release and showings in film festivals throughout 2016.




I was born in San Francisco and grew up in the Bay Area, and have lived in London for the past 20+ years. I’ve recently completed a BA in Arts & Media Management.


I have been in publishing, as an editor at On Our Backs and Quim magazines; filmmaking, as production manager on Dandy Dust from Hans Scheirl (, one of the writer/prod/directors of Well Sexy Women for the THT and most recently as producer on Campbell X’s Stud Life ( I’ve been active in grassroots political organising mainly with ACTUP/SF, and I have mentored and supported many creative queers into flourishing careers.


I have worked within the queer community since I came out in SF in 1983. My passion has always be to increase visibility and promote queer artists. I work on things that I love, thus my work is varied, unpaid and often I have long lapses between work while I earn the rent.


My memory of San Francisco remains vividly of these years and the radical events that changed our history. It is inevitable on a project like this, which I will be producing and directing, that my own experiences will be my starting point. But my story is just one of many.




Our audience will include anyone interested in San Francisco history, especially it’s queer history, it’s street culture and the radical influence SF is famous for. These stories are also of essential interest to our queer youth, who are so interested in the lives we lived and the experiences we’ve had. They carry on our radical fight – inspiration for a new generation! The generation that came immediately on our heels are the face of the changes we instigated. These artists and the activists went on to change the laws and fight from the margins to the center for LGBT rights. Finally, there is us, the storytellers, pioneers of a new queer reality. We were part of an amazing era in a magical city. Let’s recall our memories, our city, our clubs, our love and our youth.


The world needs our stories.


THANK YOU… from my heart.



Gay Semiotics Revisited – Entretien avec Hal Fischer (Aperture Blog)


In 1977, San Francisco photographer Hal Fischer produced his photo-text project Gay Semiotics, a seminal examination of the “hanky code” used to signal sexual preferences of cruising gay men in the Castro district of San Francisco. Fischer’s pictures dissected the significance of colored bandanas worn in jeans pockets, as well as how the placement of keys and earrings might telegraph passive or active roles. He also photographed a series of “gay looks”—from hippie to leather to cowboy to jock—with text that pointed out key elements of queer street-style. For Aperture magazine #218, Spring 2015, “Queer,” art historian Julia Bryan-Wilson spoke with Fischer about the origins of Gay Semiotics and how it has aged, excerpted below. This article also appears in Issue 2 of the Aperture Photography App: click here to read more and download the free app.


Julia Bryan-Wilson: You initially trained as a photographer at the University of Illinois. What brought you to the Bay Area, and what impact did that move have on your work?


Hal Fischer: I came here for graduate school in photography at San Francisco State in 1975. I really wanted to study with Jack Fulton, but I didn’t want to pay the money to go to the Art Institute. I figured that I could probably work with him as long as I was here. After I moved to the Bay Area, two pivotal things happened. One was that I began writing for Artweek three months after I arrived, so I immediately got into the fray, so to speak. The second pivotal thing was meeting Lew Thomas [cofounder of NFS Press]. That was incredibly critical.



JBW: What strikes me now about Gay Semiotics is how conceptual it is, how important the photo-text relationship is.


HF: When I applied to State, I applied with traditional photography, gelatin-silver prints mainly of the landscape. Then I got out here, and the first thing I started doing was crazy alternative work, predominantly 20-by-24-inch bleached prints with inked-on text and diagrammatic drawings. But I met Lew through my writing, because I reviewed a show of his, and he was at the center of a movement focused on connecting photography and language.


JBW: What was the Bay Area like in terms of a photography scene in the mid to late 1970s?


HF: There was a huge discourse here. You’d have an opening, and there would be two hundred people there. People talked about photography. They were really interested, and it was passionate.



JBW: Gay Semiotics is an attempt to map some of the discourse of structuralism onto the visual codes of male queer life in the Castro. How did you come to structuralism?


HF: Thanks to Lew Thomas, in graduate school I began reading things like Jack Burnham’sThe Structure of Art and Ursula Meyer’s Conceptual Art. Those were two key texts. Of course, structuralism came late to photography, when you consider that Susan Sontag’s Against Interpretation came out in 1966. Reading Burnham, going on to read Claude Lévi-Strauss, all that was crucial. I learned about signifiers, and thought, This is going on all around me.


JBW: In your bibliography for Gay Semiotics, you cite Walter Benjamin, but not Roland Barthes. Who else were you influenced by?


HF: I did read some Roland Barthes, but it’s almost like I read just enough. The signifiers were the first pictures to come out of this thinking. It was like, Oh my God, these handkerchiefs . . . this is exactly what they are writing about. Of course, that made for five pictures, and then I had to figure something out from there.


JBW: You’re doing several things in Gay Semiotics. On the one hand, you’re parsing a signification system that arose out of a nonverbal, erotic exchange, and you’re also deconstructing gay male self-fashioning and photographing “archetypes.” It is thus a photo-project about the history of photography and its long legacy of ethnographic typing.


HF: I can’t say I was conscious of it at the time, but one of the first photographers who influenced me was August Sander. I mean, I LOVED Sander. I still do. I probably was a fascist in an earlier life, because I’m definitely into types, and I’m definitely into archetyping. I don’t really think it’s that awful a thing to do; it can be very informative. I was also interested in the Bechers and the notion of repetition.


JBW: So the work is also about genre.


HF: Yes. It’s also about personal desire; it’s a lexicon of attraction.


To read the full interview, subscribe to Aperture magazine or purchase Issue #218, Spring 2015, “Queer.”




Exposition ‘Zoe Leonard: Analogue’ au MoMA du 25 juin au 30 août (New York)


This exhibition presents Zoe Leonard’s Analogue—a landmark photographic project conceived over the course of a decade—which documents, in 412 color and black-and-white photographs, the eclipsed texture of 20th-century urban life as seen in little bodegas, mom-and-pop stores with decaying facades and quirky handwritten signs, and shop windows displaying a mixed assortment of products.


Shooting with a vintage 1940s Rolleiflex camera, a tool “left over from the mechanical age,” as Leonard puts it, the artist took her own neighborhood of New York’s Lower East Side as a point of departure. She then followed the global trade of recycled merchandise—used T-shirts, old-fashioned shoes, discarded Coke advertisements, the old technology of Kodak camera shops—to far-flung places in Eastern Europe, Africa, Cuba, and Mexico. Tapping the traditions of documentary and conceptual photography, Leonard’s project, which she developed during a residency at the Wexner Center in Columbus, Ohio, is positioned within the genealogy of the grand visual archives that extend from Eugène Atget’s Paris “then and now,” to August Sander’s Face of Our Time, to Bernd and Hilla Becher’s typologies of vernacular architecture. MoMA acquired Analogue in 2013 and is the only institution outside of Europe to own this exceptional photographic installation—presented here for the first time.


The Decade Show Performance Series: Kathy Acker


« Icône punk et féministe, Kathy Acker a marqué la littérature underground new-yorkaise des 80’s. Expérimentale, mélangeant sexe et violence : une langue terroriste à redécouvrir. » (Les Inrocks)


Kathy Acker performance organized in conjunction « The Decade Show: Frameworks of Identity in the 1980s, » an exhibition co-organized by the New Museum, the Museum of Contemporary Hispanic Art, and the Studio Museum in Harlem. The performance was presented at the Bessie Schomberg at Dance Theater, Dance Theatre Workshop.






Pour plus d’informations sur Kathy Acker, voici un article publié dans les Inrocks à son sujet en 2010:

Xenofeminism: A Politics for Alienation (Laboria Cuboniks)


0x00 Ours is a world in vertigo. It is a world that swarms with 
technological mediation, interlacing our daily lives with abstraction, 
virtuality, and complexity. XF constructs a feminism adapted to these 
realities: a feminism of unprecedented cunning, scale, and vision; a future 
in which the realization of gender justice and feminist emancipation 
contribute to a universalist politics assembled from the needs of every 
human, cutting across race, ability, economic standing, and geographical 
position.  No more futureless repetition on the treadmill of capital, no more 
submission to the drudgery of labour, productive and reproductive alike, no 
more reification of the given masked as critique.  Our future requires 
depetrification.  XF is not a bid for revolution, but a wager on the long 
game of history, demanding imagination, dexterity and persistence. 

0x01 XF seizes alienation as an impetus to generate new worlds.  We are all 
alienated -- but have we ever been otherwise? It is through, and not 
despite, our alienated condition that we can free ourselves from the muck of 
immediacy.  Freedom is not a given -- and it's certainly not given by anything 
'natural'.  The construction of freedom involves not less but more 
alienation; alienation is the labour of freedom's construction.  Nothing 
should be accepted as fixed, permanent, or 'given' -- neither material 
conditions nor social forms.  XF mutates, navigates and probes every horizon.  
Anyone who's been deemed 'unnatural' in the face of reigning biological 
norms, anyone who's experienced injustices wrought in the name of natural 
order, will realize that the glorification of 'nature' has nothing to offer 
us -- the queer and trans among us, the differently-abled, as well as those who 
have suffered discrimination due to pregnancy or duties connected to 
child-rearing.  XF is vehemently anti-naturalist.  Essentialist naturalism 
reeks of theology -- the sooner it is exorcised, the better. 

0x02 Why is there so little explicit, organized effort to repurpose 
technologies for progressive gender political ends? XF seeks to 
strategically deploy existing technologies to re-engineer the world.  Serious 
risks are built into these tools; they are prone to imbalance, abuse, and 
exploitation of the weak.  Rather than pretending to risk nothing, XF 
advocates the necessary assembly of techno-political interfaces responsive 
to these risks.  Technology isn't inherently progressive.  Its uses are fused 
with culture in a positive feedback loop that makes linear sequencing, 
prediction, and absolute caution impossible.  Technoscientific innovation 
must be linked to a collective theoretical and political thinking in which 
women, queers, and the gender non-conforming play an unparalleled role. 

0x03 The real emancipatory potential of technology remains unrealized.  Fed 
by the market, its rapid growth is offset by bloat, and elegant innovation 
is surrendered to the buyer, whose stagnant world it decorates.  Beyond the 
noisy clutter of commodified cruft, the ultimate task lies in engineering 
technologies to combat unequal access to reproductive and pharmacological 
tools, environmental cataclysm, economic instability, as well as dangerous 
forms of unpaid/underpaid labour.  Gender inequality still characterizes the 
fields in which our technologies are conceived, built, and legislated for, 
while female workers in electronics (to name just one industry) perform some 
of the worst paid, monotonous and debilitating labour.  Such injustice 
demands structural, machinic and ideological correction. 

0x04 Xenofeminism is a rationalism.  To claim that reason or rationality is 
'by nature' a patriarchal enterprise is to concede defeat.  It is true that 
the canonical 'history of thought' is dominated by men, and it is male hands 
we see throttling existing institutions of science and technology.  But this 
is precisely why feminism must be a rationalism -- because of this miserable 
imbalance, and not despite it.  There is no 'feminine' rationality, nor is 
there a 'masculine' one.  Science is not an expression but a suspension of 
gender.  If today it is dominated by masculine egos, then it is at odds with 
itself -- and this contradiction can be leveraged.  Reason, like information, 
wants to be free, and patriarchy cannot give it freedom.  Rationalism must 
itself be a feminism.  XF marks the point where these claims intersect in a 
two-way dependency.  It names reason as an engine of feminist emancipation, 
and declares the right of everyone to speak as no one in particular. 


0x05 The excess of modesty in feminist agendas of recent decades is not 
proportionate to the monstrous complexity of our reality, a reality 
crosshatched with fibre-optic cables, radio and microwaves, oil and gas 
pipelines, aerial and shipping routes, and the unrelenting, simultaneous 
execution of millions of communication protocols with every passing 
millisecond.  Systematic thinking and structural analysis have largely fallen 
by the wayside in favour of admirable, but insufficient struggles, bound to 
fixed localities and fragmented insurrections.  Whilst capitalism is 
understood as a complex and ever-expanding totality, many would-be emancipat-
tory anti-capitalist projects remain profoundly fearful of transitioning to
the universal, resisting big-picture speculative politics by condemning them
as necessarily oppressive vectors.  Such a false guarantee treats universals
as absolute, generating a debilitating disjuncture between the thing we seek
to depose and the strategies we advance to depose it. 

0x06 Global complexity opens us to urgent cognitive and ethical demands.  
These are Promethean responsibilities that cannot pass unaddressed.  Much of 
twenty-first century feminism -- from the remnants of postmodern identity 
politics to large swathes of contemporary ecofeminism -- struggles to 
adequately address these challenges in a manner capable of producing 
substantial and enduring change.  Xenofeminism endeavours to face up to these 
obligations as collective agents capable of transitioning between multiple 
levels of political, material and conceptual organization. 

0x07 We are adamantly synthetic, unsatisfied by analysis alone.  XF urges 
constructive oscillation between description and prescription to mobilize 
the recursive potential of contemporary technologies upon gender, sexuality 
and disparities of power.  Given that there are a range of gendered 
challenges specifically relating to life in a digital age -- from sexual 
harassment via social media, to doxxing, privacy, and the protection of 
online images -- the situation requires a feminism at ease with computation.  
Today, it is imperative that we develop an ideological infrastructure that 
both supports and facilitates feminist interventions within connective, 
networked elements of the contemporary world.  Xenofeminism is about more 
than digital self-defence and freedom from patriarchal networks.  We want to 
cultivate the exercise of positive freedom -- freedom-to rather than simply 
freedom-from -- and urge feminists to equip themselves with the skills to 
redeploy existing technologies and invent novel cognitive and material tools 
in the service of common ends. 

0x08 The radical opportunities afforded by developing (and alienating) forms 
of technological mediation should no longer be put to use in the exclusive 
interests of capital, which, by design, only benefits the few.  There are 
incessantly proliferating tools to be annexed, and although no one can claim 
their comprehensive accessibility, digital tools have never been more widely 
available or more sensitive to appropriation than they are today.  This is 
not an elision of the fact that a large amount of the world's poor is 
adversely affected by the expanding technological industry (from factory 
workers labouring under abominable conditions to the Ghanaian villages that 
have become a repository for the e-waste of the global powers) but an 
explicit acknowledgement of these conditions as a target for elimination.  
Just as the invention of the stock market was also the invention of the 
crash, Xenofeminism knows that technological innovation must equally 
anticipate its systemic condition responsively. 


0x09 XF rejects illusion and melancholy as political inhibitors.  Illusion, 
as the blind presumption that the weak can prevail over the strong with no 
strategic coordination, leads to unfulfilled promises and unmarshalled 
drives.  This is a politics that, in wanting so much, ends up building so 
little.  Without the labour of large-scale, collective social organisation, 
declaring one's desire for global change is nothing more than wishful 
thinking.  On the other hand, melancholy -- so endemic to the left -- teaches 
us that emancipation is an extinct species to be wept over and that blips of 
negation are the best we can hope for.  At its worst, such an attitude 
generates nothing but political lassitude, and at its best, installs an 
atmosphere of pervasive despair which too often degenerates into factionalism
and petty moralizing.  The malady of melancholia only compounds political
inertia, and -- under the guise of being realistic -- relinquishes all 
hope of calibrating the world otherwise.   It is against such maladies that 
XF innoculates. 

0x0A We take politics that exclusively valorize the local in the guise of 
subverting currents of global abstraction, to be insufficient.  To secede 
from or disavow capitalist machinery will not make it disappear.  Likewise, 
suggestions to pull the lever on the emergency brake of embedded velocities, 
the call to slow down and scale back, is a possibility available only to the 
few -- a violent particularity of exclusivity -- ultimately entailing catas-
trophe for the many.  Refusing to think beyond the microcommunity, to foster 
connections between fractured insurgencies, to consider how emancipatory 
tactics can be scaled up for universal implementation, is to remain 
satisfied with temporary and defensive gestures.  XF is an affirmative 
creature on the offensive, fiercely insisting on the possibility of 
large-scale social change for all of our alien kin. 

0x0B A sense of the world's volatility and artificiality seems to have faded 
from contemporary queer and feminist politics, in favour of a plural but 
static constellation of gender identities, in whose bleak light equations of 
the good and the natural are stubbornly restored.  While having (perhaps) 
admirably expanded thresholds of 'tolerance', too often we are told to seek 
solace in unfreedom, staking claims on being 'born' this way, as if offering 
an excuse with nature's blessing.  All the while, the heteronormative centre 
chugs on.  XF challenges this centrifugal referent, knowing full well that 
sex and gender are exemplary of the fulcrum between norm and fact, between 
freedom and compulsion.  To tilt the fulcrum in the direction of nature is a 
defensive concession at best, and a retreat from what makes trans and queer 
politics more than just a lobby: that it is an arduous assertion of freedom 
against an order that seemed immutable.  Like every myth of the given, a 
stable foundation is fabulated for a real world of chaos, violence, and 
doubt.  The 'given' is sequestered into the private realm as a certainty, 
whilst retreating on fronts of public consequences.  When the possibility of 
transition became real and known, the tomb under Nature's shrine cracked, 
and new histories -- bristling with futures -- escaped the old order of 'sex'.
The disciplinary grid of gender is in no small part an attempt to mend that 
shattered foundation, and tame the lives that escaped it.  The time has now 
come to tear down this shrine entirely, and not bow down before it in a 
piteous apology for what little autonomy has been won. 

0x0C If 'cyberspace' once offered the promise of escaping the strictures of 
essentialist identity categories, the climate of contemporary social media 
has swung forcefully in the other direction, and has become a theatre where 
these prostrations to identity are performed.  With these curatorial 
practices come puritanical rituals of moral maintenance, and these stages 
are too often overrun with the disavowed pleasures of accusation, shaming, 
and denunciation.  Valuable platforms for connection, organization, and 
skill-sharing become clogged with obstacles to productive debate positioned 
as if they are debate.  These puritanical politics of shame -- which fetishize 
oppression as if it were a blessing, and cloud the waters in moralistic 
frenzies -- leave us cold.  We want neither clean hands nor beautiful souls, 
neither virtue nor terror.  We want superior forms of corruption. 

0x0D What this shows is that the task of engineering platforms for social 
emancipation and organization cannot ignore the cultural and semiotic 
mutations these platforms afford.  What requires reengineering are the 
memetic parasites arousing and coordinating behaviours in ways occluded by 
their hosts' self-image; failing this, memes like 'anonymity', 'ethics', 
'social justice' and 'privilege-checking' host social dynamisms at odds with 
the often-commendable intentions with which they're taken up.  The task of 
collective self-mastery requires a hyperstitional manipulation of desire's 
puppet-strings, and deployment of semiotic operators over a terrain of 
highly networked cultural systems.  The will will always be corrupted by the 
memes in which it traffics, but nothing prevents us from instrumentalizing 
this fact, and calibrating it in view of the ends it desires. 


0x0E Xenofeminism is gender-abolitionist.  'Gender abolitionism' is not code 
for the eradication of what are currently considered 'gendered' traits from 
the human population.  Under patriarchy, such a project could only spell 
disaster -- the notion of what is 'gendered' sticks disproportionately to the 
feminine.  But even if this balance were redressed, we have no interest in 
seeing the sexuate diversity of the world reduced.  Let a hundred sexes 
bloom! 'Gender abolitionism' is shorthand for the ambition to construct a 
society where traits currently assembled under the rubric of gender, no 
longer furnish a grid for the asymmetric operation of power.  'Race 
abolitionism' expands into a similar formula -- that the struggle must continue 
until currently racialized characteristics are no more a basis of 
discrimination than than the color of one's eyes.  Ultimately, every 
emancipatory abolitionism must incline towards the horizon of class 
abolitionism, since it is in capitalism where we encounter oppression in its 
transparent, denaturalized form: you're not exploited or oppressed because 
you are a wage labourer or poor; you are a labourer or poor because you are 

0x0F Xenofeminism understands that the viability of emancipatory 
abolitionist projects -- the abolition of class, gender, and race -- hinges on a 
profound reworking of the universal.  The universal must be grasped as 
generic, which is to say, intersectional.  Intersectionality is not the 
morcellation of collectives into a static fuzz of cross-referenced 
identities, but a political orientation that slices through every 
particular, refusing the crass pigeonholing of bodies.  This is not a 
universal that can be imposed from above, but built from the bottom up  --  
or, better, laterally, opening new lines of transit across an uneven 
landscape.  This non-absolute, generic universality must guard against the 
facile tendency of conflation with bloated, unmarked particulars -- namely 
Eurocentric universalism -- whereby the male is mistaken for the sexless, the 
white for raceless, the cis for the real, and so on.  Absent such a 
universal, the abolition of class will remain a bourgeois fantasy, the 
abolition of race will remain a tacit white-supremacism, and the abolition 
of gender will remain a thinly veiled misogyny, even -- especially -- when 
prosecuted by avowed feminists themselves.  (The absurd and reckless 
spectacle of so many self-proclaimed 'gender abolitionists'' campaign 
against trans women is proof enough of this. )

0x10 From the postmoderns, we have learnt to burn the facades of the false 
universal and dispel such confusions; from the moderns, we have learnt to 
sift new universals from the ashes of the false.  Xenofeminism seeks to 
construct a coalitional politics, a politics without the infection of 
purity.  Wielding the universal requires thoughtful qualification and precise 
self-reflection so as to become a ready-to-hand tool for multiple political 
bodies and something that can be appropriated against the numerous 
oppressions that transect with gender and sexuality.  The universal is no 
blueprint, and rather than dictate its uses in advance, we propose XF as a 
platform.  The very process of construction is therefore understood to be a 
negentropic, iterative, and continual refashioning.  Xenofeminism seeks to be 
a mutable architecture that, like open source software, remains available 
for perpetual modification and enhancement following the navigational 
impulse of militant ethical reasoning.  Open, however, does not mean 
undirected.  The most durable systems in the world owe their stability to the 
way they train order to emerge as an 'invisible hand' from apparent 
spontaneity; or exploit the inertia of investment and sedimentation.  We 
should not hesitate to learn from our adversaries or the successes and 
failures of history.  With this in mind, XF seeks ways to seed an order that 
is equitable and just, injecting it into the geometry of freedoms these 
platforms afford. 


0x11 Our lot is cast with technoscience, where nothing is so sacred that it 
cannot be reengineered and transformed so as to widen our aperture of 
freedom, extending to gender and the human.  To say that nothing is sacred, 
that nothing is transcendent or protected from the will to know, to tinker 
and to hack, is to say that nothing is supernatural.  'Nature' -- understood 
here, as the unbounded arena of science -- is all there is.  And so, in tearing 
down melancholy and illusion; the unambitious and the non-scaleable; the 
libidinized puritanism of certain online cultures, and Nature as an 
un-remakeable given, we find that our normative anti-naturalism has pushed 
us towards an unflinching ontological naturalism.  There is nothing, we 
claim, that cannot be studied scientifically and manipulated 

0x12 This does not mean that the distinction between the ontological and the 
normative, between fact and value, is simply cut and dried.  The vectors of 
normative anti-naturalism and ontological naturalism span many ambivalent 
battlefields.  The project of untangling what ought to be from what is, of 
dissociating freedom from fact, will from knowledge, is, indeed, an infinite 
task.  There are many lacunae where desire confronts us with the brutality of 
fact, where beauty is indissociable from truth.  Poetry, sex, technology and 
pain are incandescent with this tension we have traced.  But give up on the 
task of revision, release the reins and slacken that tension, and these 
filaments instantly dim. 


0x13 The potential of early, text-based internet culture for countering 
repressive gender regimes, generating solidarity among marginalised groups, 
and creating new spaces for experimentation that ignited cyberfeminism in 
the nineties has clearly waned in the twenty-first century.  The dominance of 
the visual in today's online interfaces has reinstated familiar modes of 
identity policing, power relations and gender norms in self-representation.  
But this does not mean that cyberfeminist sensibilities belong to the past.  
Sorting the subversive possibilities from the oppressive ones latent in 
today's web requires a feminism sensitive to the insidious return of old 
power structures, yet savvy enough to know how to exploit the potential.  
Digital technologies are not separable from the material realities that 
underwrite them; they are connected so that each can be used to alter the 
other towards different ends.  Rather than arguing for the primacy of the 
virtual over the material, or the material over the virtual, xenofeminism 
grasps points of power and powerlessness in both, to unfold this knowledge 
as effective interventions in our jointly composed reality. 

0x14 Intervention in more obviously material hegemonies is just as crucial 
as intervention in digital and cultural ones.  Changes to the built 
environment harbour some of the most significant possibilities in the 
reconfiguration of the horizons of women and queers.  As the embodiment of 
ideological constellations, the production of space and the decisions we 
make for its organization are ultimately articulations about 'us' and 
reciprocally, how a 'we' can be articulated.  With the potential to 
foreclose, restrict, or open up future social conditions, xenofeminists must 
become attuned to the language of architecture as a vocabulary for 
collective choreo-graphy -- the coordinated writing of space. 

0x15 From the street to the home, domestic space too must not escape our 
tentacles.  So profoundly ingrained, domestic space has been deemed 
impossible to disembed, where the home as norm has been conflated with home 
as fact, as an un-remakeable given.  Stultifying 'domestic realism' has no 
home on our horizon.  Let us set sights on augmented homes of shared 
laboratories, of communal media and technical facilities.  The home is ripe 
for spatial transformation as an integral component in any process of 
feminist futurity.  But this cannot stop at the garden gates.  We see too well 
that reinventions of family structure and domestic life are currently only 
possible at the cost of either withdrawing from the economic sphere -- the way 
of the commune -- or bearing its burdens manyfold -- the way of the single parent.  
If we want to break the inertia that has kept the moribund figure of the 
nuclear family unit in place, which has stubbornly worked to isolate women 
from the public sphere, and men from the lives of their children, while 
penalizing those who stray from it, we must overhaul the material 
infrastructure and break the economic cycles that lock it in place.  The task 
before us is twofold, and our vision necessarily stereoscopic: we must 
engineer an economy that liberates reproductive labour and family life, 
while building models of familiality free from the deadening grind of wage 

0x16 From the home to the body, the articulation of a proactive politics for 
biotechnical intervention and hormones presses.  Hormones hack into gender 
systems possessing political scope extending beyond the aesthetic 
calibration of individual bodies.  Thought structurally, the distribution of 
hormones -- who or what this distribution prioritizes or pathologizes -- is of 
paramount import.  The rise of the internet and the hydra of black market 
pharmacies it let loose -- together with a publicly accessible archive of 
endocrinological knowhow -- was instrumental in wresting control of the 
hormonal economy away from 'gatekeeping' institutions seeking to mitigate 
threats to established distributions of the sexual.  To trade in the rule of 
bureaucrats for the market is, however, not a victory in itself.  These tides 
need to rise higher.  We ask whether the idiom of 'gender hacking' is 
extensible into a long-range strategy, a strategy for wetware akin to what 
hacker culture has already done for software -- constructing an entire universe 
of free and open source platforms that is the closest thing to a practicable 
communism many of us have ever seen.  Without the foolhardy endangerment of 
lives, can we stitch together the embryonic promises held before us by 
pharmaceutical 3D printing ('Reactionware'), grassroots telemedical abortion 
clinics, gender hacktivist and DIY-HRT forums, and so on, to assemble a 
platform for free and open source medicine?

0x17 From the global to the local, from the cloud to our bodies, 
xenofeminism avows the responsibility in constructing new institutions of 
technomaterialist hegemonic proportions.  Like engineers who must conceive of 
a total structure as well as the molecular parts from which it is 
constructed, XF emphasises the importance of the mesopolitical sphere 
against the limited effectiveness of local gestures, creation of autonomous 
zones, and sheer horizontalism, just as it stands against transcendent, or 
top-down impositions of values and norms.  The mesopolitical arena of 
xenofeminism's universalist ambitions comprehends itself as a mobile and 
intricate network of transits between these polarities.  As pragmatists, we 
invite contamination as a mutational driver between such frontiers. 


0x18 XF asserts that adapting our behaviour for an era of Promethean 
complexity is a labour requiring patience, but a ferocious patience at odds 
with 'waiting'.  Calibrating a political hegemony or insurgent memeplex not 
only implies the creation of material infra-structures to make the values it 
articulates explicit, but places demands on us as subjects.  How are we to 
become hosts of this new world? How do we build a better semiotic 
parasite -- one that arouses the desires we want to desire, that orchestrates 
not an autophagic orgy of indignity or rage, but an emancipatory and 
egalitarian community buttressed by new forms of unselfish solidarity and 
collective self-mastery?

0x19 Is xenofeminism a programme? Not if this means anything so crude as a 
recipe, or a single-purpose tool by which a determinate problem is solved.  
We prefer to think like the schemer or lisper, who seeks to construct a new 
language in which the problem at hand is immersed, so that solutions for it, 
and for any number of related problems, might unfurl with ease.  Xenofeminism 
is a platform, an incipient ambition to construct a new language for sexual 
politics -- a language that seizes its own methods as materials to be reworked, 
and incrementally bootstraps itself into existence.  We understand that the 
problems we face are systemic and interlocking, and that any chance of 
global success depends on infecting myriad skills and contexts with the 
logic of XF.  Ours is a transformation of seeping, directed subsumption 
rather than rapid overthrow; it is a transformation of deliberate 
construction, seeking to submerge the white-supremacist capitalist 
patriarchy in a sea of procedures that soften its shell and dismantle its 
defenses, so as to build a new world from the scraps. 

0x1A Xenofeminism indexes the desire to construct an alien future with a 
triumphant X on a mobile map.  This X does not mark a destination.  It is the 
insertion of a topological-keyframe for the formation of a new logic.  In 
affirming a future untethered to the repetition of the present, we militate 
for ampliative capacities, for spaces of freedom with a richer geometry than 
the aisle, the assembly line, and the feed.  We need new affordances of 
perception and action unblinkered by naturalised identities.  In the name of 
feminism, 'Nature' shall no longer be a refuge of injustice, or a basis for 
any political justification whatsoever!

If nature is unjust, change nature!







Pioneering Feminist Artist Miriam Schapiro Dies at 91

Sarah Cascone, Tuesday, June 23, 2015



Miriam Schapiro in 2002. Photo: Anne Burlock Lawver.

Pioneering feminist artist Miriam Schapiro, age 91, died on Saturday.


A writer, sculptor, and teacher, Schapiro played an important role in thedevelopment and the definition of feminist art.


Born in Toronto, Shapiro began drawing at an early age, and took art classes at New York’s Museum of Modern Art as a high school student. Her father was an artist and industrial designer, and her parents were supportive of her chosen career, despite the barriers she encountered as a female artist at the time.


Schapiro studied at the State University of Iowa, receiving her BA, MA, and MFA. She began her career as a member of New York’s second generation of Abstract Expressionists before moving to California in 1967 to teach at Cal-Arts in Valencia.


It was there that Schapiro became a leading figure of the burgeoning feminist movement. Her computer-generated painting, OX (1968), is notable for its embrace of vaginal imagery and focus on the body, which became a hallmark of the work of such artists as Hannah Wilke, Carolee Schneemann, Judy Chicago, and Ida Applebroog, among others, as well as pioneering photographers such as Joan E. Biren.


Miriam Schapiro, <em>Ox</em> (1968). Photo: courtesy the Brooklyn Museum.

With Chicago, Schapiro coined the term « central core imagery » in the essay « Female Imagery, » published in Womanspace Journal in 1973.


« To be a woman is to be an object of contempt, and the vagina, stamp of femaleness, is devalued. The woman artist, seeing herself as loathed, takes that very mark of her otherness and by asserting it as the hallmark of her iconography, establishes a vehicle by which to state the truth and beauty of her identity, » the pair wrote.


For Schapiro, such imagery and aesthetics served as a visual language through which feminist ideologies could be communicated.


In 1971, Schapiro convinced CalArts to let her found the Feminist Art Program with Chicago, who had previously run the Fresno Feminist Art Program.


An important part of the course was Womanhouse (1972), an art installation project where Chicago, Schapiro, and students such as Mira Schor and Faith Wilding, among others, transformed an abandoned 17-room house into a feminist art environment, complete with Chicago’s pristine white « menstruation bathroom, » with double-wrapped feminine hygiene products on display.


Miriam Schapiro (with Sherry Brody), <em>Dollhouse</em> (1973), at the Smithsonian American Art Museum.  Photo: Bailey614, via Wikimedia Commons.

In the late 1970s, Schapiro moved back to New York and became an important figure in the Pattern and Decoration movement, creating collage works that straddled the line between painting and textile art, incorporating lace, sequins, needlework, and other traditional women’s art objects collected from women across the country.


Schapiro dubbed such work « femmage. »


« The thing about Pattern and Decoration for us feminists was that in women’s traditional art you see pattern and decoration. And of course the decorative was always considered a trivialization, » Schapiro explained in a 1989 oral history interview for the Archives of American Art. Her work looked to combat such prejudice, and to elevate craft and domestic culture.


In her later years, Schapiro made a series of works in « collaboration » with historical female artists such as Frida Kahlo and members of the Russian avant garde.


In 2006, Rutgers University in New Brunswick, New Jersey opened theMiriam Schapiro Archives for Women Artists.


Her work is held in numerous international institutions including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, and the Whitney Museum of American Art, both in New York, the Museum of Find Arts, Boston, and the Israel Museum in Tel Aviv.


Miriam Schapiro in 1977.  Photo:

Rétrospective Lea Lublin au Musée Lenbachhaus de Munich du 25 juin au 13 septembre






















Lenbachhaus presents the first retrospective exhibition dedicated to Argentine-French artist Lea Lublin (1929 Brest, Poland – 1999 Paris). Having begun her career as a painter in Buenos Aires, Lublin radically changed course in the mid-1960s to create art that would offer the greatest possible agency and participation for its audience. Lublin belonged to a generation of such artists as Lygia Clark and Allan Kaprow, committed to overcoming the boundaries separating ‘art and life’. Seeking dialogue and confrontation, Lublin’s approach was at once sensual and didactic, challenging yet egalitarian. Her work closely engaged with currents in critical theory, philosophy, and art of her time, and brings them alive for us today. Though familiar to her artistic peers and a younger generation of scholars in France and Argentina, Lublin’s work is still largely unfamiliar to a broader international audience. Spanning three decades, the exhibition at Lenbachhaus focuses on several essential chapters in the artist’s trajectory: the abandonment of painting in favour of environments and actions, the use of dialogue as an art form, the deconstruction of art historical imagery from a psychoanalytical and feminist standpoint, and the inquiry into Marcel Duchamp’s sojourn in Buenos Aires. In addition to photographs, drawings, wall installations, and videos, the exhibition will feature a reconstruction of Lublin’s most ambitious environment “Fluvio Subtunal“ (1969).


On the occasion of the exhibition, Lenbachhaus has restored and preserved a large body of key works from the artist’s estate. Many works are on view for the first time in 20 years.
International loans from The Museum of Modern Art in New York, the Centre national des arts plastiques, the Fonds régional d’art contemporain Alsace, and the Bibliothèque nationale de France complete the presentation.


A copiously illustrated catalogue will be published in conjunction with the exhibition featuring contributions by Stephanie Weber, Thibault Boulvain, Catherine Francblin, Teresa Riccardi, Monika Bayer-Wermuth, Isabel Plante, and Pierre Restany. The publication features Lublin’s most important writing and, for the first time, translations of her texts into English and German.




Colloque « House, work, artwork: feminism and art history’s new domesticities » – Université de Birmingham, le 3 et 4 juillet

3-4 July, 2015, University of Birmingham, UK

Organised by Jo Applin and Francesca Berry

Co-sponsored by the University of Birmingham, the University of York, and the Oxford Art Journal.


Keynote speakers  Mignon Nixon (Courtauld Institute of Art, London) and Julia Bryan-Wilson (University of California, Berkeley)


Speakers include: Sarah Blaylock (UC Santa Cruz), Amy Charlesworth (Open University), Agata Jakubowska (Adam Mickiewicz University), Teresa Kittler  (UCL), Alexandra Kokoli (Middlesex University), Megan Luke (University of Southern California), Barbara Mahlknecht (Academy of Fine Arts, Vienna), Alyce Mahon (University of Cambridge), Elizabeth Robles (University of Bristol), Harriet Riches (Kingston University), Giulia Smith (UCL), Catherine Spencer (University of St. Andrews), Amy Tobin (University of York).


This conference is motivated by the premise that it is appropriate for feminist art history to re-visit and newly configure theoretical, methodological and political debate around modernist, postmodernist and contemporary artistic practice in relation to the domestic. Having been a significant focus of 1980s feminist art-historical scholarship, domesticity has since been eclipsed in feminist analysis by focus on corporeality, subjectivity and globalisation, amongst other significant concepts. This conference seeks to evaluate the intellectual and political gains, and potentially losses, to be made from investing once again in existing feminist theoretical frameworks, including the materialist, the psychoanalytical and the postcolonial. It also invites contributions framed by alternative or more recent modes of feminist enquiry, including those constituted through the framework of artistic practice itself. The sexual politics of domestic, artistic, and scholarly labour, productive agency, and the obedient or disobedient domestic imaginary might constitute one focus. However, these are by no means the only or defining parameters of this conference’s aim to engage with a feminist politics and practice of home making and unmaking.


This conference is particularly timely in the light of art and art history’s ‘new’ domesticities. These include queer art history’s turn towards the domestic as a site for imagining, making and inhabiting space within or without the hetero-normative, and recent art-historical and curatorial projects focusing on modern and contemporary art practice and the home, but in which the question of feminism is downplayed in favour of more generalised concepts of subversion, labour and belonging. More broadly, the rise of the ‘new domesticity’ within popular culture continues to proliferate, such as the cult of the cupcake, knitting groups, home-baking television programmes and, more generally, 1950s ‘housewife’ design aesthetics. Contrast, for example, the discursive de-politicisation of today’s home-making in art and mass culture with the actively feminist domestic ambivalence of 1970s artistic practice, exemplified by Martha Rosler’s Semiotics of the Kitchen (1975) and Laurie Simmons’ Early Color Interiors(1978). Finally, we might remember that these new domesticities and today’s artistic and art-historical practices take place in spite of, and as a product of, ongoing global, domestic, social and economic inequalities, violence, and oppression, even in the so-called ‘post-feminist’ West.





House, Work, Artwork: Feminism and Art History’s New Domesticities

Programme – Friday 3 and Saturday 4 July 2015

Lecture Theatre, Barber Institute of Fine Arts, University of Birmingham

Friday 3 July 2015

11.30am – 12.00pm   Registration in foyer

12.00pm – 12.15pm   Welcome and Introduction – Francesca Berry (University of

Birmingham) and Jo Applin (University of York)

12.15pm – 1.15pm     Keynote

Magpie: Keeping House with Louise Nevelson – Julia Bryan-Wilson (University of California, Berkeley)

1.15pm – 2.00pm       Lunch (not provided)

Panel 1:                     Labour, Legacy and Domestic Methodology

2.00pm – 2.20pm       Attention! Maintenance: How Do You Keep Going? Domestic, Maintenance and Care Work in Art Informed by Feminism – Barbara Mahlknecht (Academy of Fine Arts Vienna)

2.20pm – 2.40pm       Unfinished Business: The Persistence of the Public-Private Relation in Feminist Art Practice Since the 1970s – Amy Charlesworth (The Open University)

2.40pm – 3.00pm       Fieldwork not Housework: Performing Feminist Sociology in the 1960s and 70s – Catherine Spencer (St. Andrews University)

3.00pm – 3.30pm       Discussion

3.30 – 4.00pm             Tea & Coffee

Panel 2:                      Housing, Techniques of Making and Unmaking

4.00pm – 4.20pm       Our Life Together: Collective Homemaking in the Films of Ella Bergmann-Michel – Megan Luke (University of Southern California)

4.20pm – 4.40pm       Alison Smithson’s Future Domesticities – Giulia Smith (University College London)

4.40pm – 5.00pm       Living Differently, Seeing Differently: Carla Accardi’s Temporary Structures (1965–1972) – Teresa Kittler (University College London)

5.00pm – 5.30pm       Discussion

Saturday 4 July 2015

10.00am – 10.30am   Registration in foyer

Panel 3:                    Photographic Domesticities, Compliance and Resistance

10.30am – 10.50am   Pix and Clicks: Photography, Femininity and the New Domesticity – Harriet Riches (Kingston University)

10.50am – 11.10am   Being the Woman They Thought She Was: Cornelia Schleime Performs her Stasi file – Sara Blaylock (University of California, Santa Cruz)

11.10am – 11.30am   Maxine Walker; Imaging the Homeplace – Elizabeth Robles

11.30am – 12.00pm   Discussion

12.00pm – 12.50pm  Lunch (not provided)

Panel 4:                   Domestic Objects, Intimate and Erotic

12.50pm – 1.10pm     The Domestic as Erotic Rite in the Art of Carolee Schneemann – Alyce Mahon (University of Cambridge)

1.10pm – 1.30pm       House. Work. Eroticism. The Case of Maria Pinińska-Bereś – Agata Jakubowska (Adam Mickiewicz University)

1.30pm – 1.50pm       Discussion

1.50pm – 2.00pm      Comfort Break

Panel 5:                     Inhabitations, Collective and Radical

2.00pm – 2.20pm       A Woman’s Place: Radical Domesticity and The Spaces of Second Wave Feminist Activism – Amy Tobin (University of York)

2.20pm – 2.40pm       Pre-emptive Mourning (or Melancholia)? The Home as Tomb in Art Informed by Feminism and Anti-Nuclear Activism – Alexandra M. Kokoli (Middlesex University)

2.40pm – 3.00pm       Discussion

3.00pm – 3.30pm       Tea & Coffee provided for all in foyer

3.30pm – 4.30pm       Keynote

Mary Kelly’s Mimus: Feminism’s Waves – Mignon Nixon (Courtauld Institute of Art)

4.30pm – 4.45pm       Closing Remarks – Jo Applin and Francesca Berry

5.00pm – 6.00pm       Wine Reception for all in foyer




Plus d’informations:

Exposition Alice Springs à la Maison européenne de la photographie du 24 juin au 23 août


alice spring alice spring2 alicesprings3 alicesprings4 alicesprings5alicesprings6



June Newton, d’origine australienne, était une actrice de théâtre avant de rencontrer Helmut Newton, alors installé dans un modeste studio de photo à Melbourne.

En 1948, elle devient son épouse et sa fidèle collaboratrice pendant presque soixante ans. Mais dès les années 1970, elle mène également, sous le pseudonyme d’Alice Springs, sa propre carrière de photographe.

Aujourd’hui, la MEP présente le deuxième volet d’une exposition de portraits dont la première partie a été montrée en 2012.
Ici, des images d’Alice Springs – en couleur et en noir et blanc, réalisées à partir de 1975, mélangeant célébrités et anonymes – sont toujours directes et humaines, d’une sensibilité et d’un naturel surprenants.

À côté de ses portraits de photographes (Jacques Henri Lartigue, Brassai, Man Ray, Richard Avedon, Ralph Gibson…) ou des stars (Nicole Kidman, Audrey Hepburn, Terence Stamp, Luciano Pavarotti…), Alice Springs dévoile de nombreuses images inédites, dont des autoportraits récents, des images intimes de son mari au travail ou chez eux, ainsi qu’une série inédite réalisée en Californie au début des années 1980 sur les mouvements punk et hip hop américains







En collaboration avec