Date of Award
Master of Fine Arts (MFA)
In my work, I aim to historicize the mechanics of misogyny. Through appropriation and re- authorship, the work interrogates and exposes the discreet erasure of contemporary gender inequalities and the societal attempt to obscure the historical origins of these inequalities.
My thesis work has been focused on Frederick W. Macmonnies, a predominant beaux-arts sculptor responsible for many early-twentieth-century American fountains and monuments. Many of his sculptures were embroiled in controversy, on grounds ranging from their aesthetic competence to their alleged misogyny. Macmonnies’ staunch academicism ran parallel to the birth of modernism, effectively expelling his name from the contemporary canon of twentieth-century American Art, despite the sculptures’ continued public presence. Some remain in their original location, like the two fountains flanking the 42nd street Library in Manhattan, while others have literally been put to rest; The Triumph of Civic Virtue, once prominently displayed in front of city hall, now resides in the Green-Wood Cemetery. Allegorical sculptures were, and continue to be, installed in front of governmental buildings, intended to ground the concurrence of moral and political authority in the eyes of the elite as well as the governed. These sculptures surround every institution of confinement, present but unseen.
This text functions as a theoretical framework for my practice, grounding the impetus and methodology of my engagement with Frederick MacMonnies & his works.
Jasek, Laura, "Art loser" (2017). Masters Theses. 157.
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