Women Collared for Work

 

Background

 

I began researching the concept of collars at the New York City Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT) library in 2000.  After realizing that documenting the work women did during the 20th Century was too big an undertaking for one person, I approached and then selected other artists who were excited about the concept to create a group show.  They were enthused about the idea of bringing hidden contributions of women to the surface through visual art.   I selected eight artists from a variety of disciplines.  The range of work includes: life-sized vine woven figurative busts of suffragettes; mono-prints of early century professional art illustrators; assemblage constructions using cabinets with objects and drawing from the 1930’s; intimate stitched, abstract acrylic paintings of the same era; monochromatic calligraphic images that related to American-Japanese culture during World War II; collaged canvas and three dimensional Hat Box sculptures of the 1940’s and 1950’s; soft costumed sculptured torsos of the 1960’s and 1970’s; and cast paper wall relief figurative constructions over wood relating to artist contributions in the 1980’s.

 

I asked each artist to create her own concept of how she would approach the “Collar” theme identifying women and a time period on which to focus. Geographically the artists live and work in New York City, Florida, Tennessee, Delaware and Pennsylvania.  We frequently communicated by phone, email and UPS deliveries to refine the overall concept and motifs. 

 

We self-funded and used grants to sustain the project.  Now we are at the point where we can make a reasonable estimate of when the works will be available.  Exhibits can be scheduled as of February 2008.

 

Currently, I own a collection of 20 magazines, books, documents, photographs and a twenty-minute DVD documentary by Mark Marquisee entitled, “Getting Down to Work.” Capitalizing on the essence of different eras in this exhibit, this collection is deliverable for display only, as it is copyrighted material.  In addition to the works of art, this collection of materials is available for museum staff use.

 

 

Judith Schwab

Artist/curator

Women Collard for Work

j_art_schwab@comcast.net

www.judithschwab.com

cell phone:  302-545-5223

 

 


How will, Women Collared for Work attract and impact its audience?

 

 

Just as there is a market for books that feature women as protagonists, there will be and audience interested in seeing an art exhibition by women artists that highlights the achievement of women.

 

Looking at the “Collar” as a means of adornment, control and identification, Women Collared for Work provides a unique passageway to culture by presenting talent that combines familiar objects with art craft, methods and materials fashioned into awe inspiring objects of art. Through the artists’ concept and unique handling of materials, these works will spark a message that transports the viewer to another time, place and era.  Each artist’s series of works are presented as an object of “experience” in and of itself, enjoining the observer to study every intimate detail and nuance of each piece.  According to Michelangelo, “Trifles go to make perfection, and perfection is no trifle.”

 

Women Collard for Work follows a chronological path, from honoring early 20th Century suffragettes to the modern pioneer artist of the 1980’s and 1990’s.  One of the goals of the exhibition is to recognize contributions of strong women who have often gone without recognition in present times.  The unique contribution of each woman and time represented comes to life through the variety of processes used by the artists.  This includes the creative concepts represented by weaving of reed; historic objects; collage on canvas; hatboxes; mixed media mono-prints; calligraphic monochromatic paintings; costumed soft sculptures; stitched acrylic images; and cast paper with wood.

 

Meaningful symbols, such as “Rosie the Riveter,” that inspired the masses during World War II, emerge throughout the exhibition.  Today’s audience, including mothers, wives and relatives of servicemen can readily identify with those who were strong enough to rise above the stress of war and endure in times of crisis.

 

This exhibition provides a significant experience that imbues the viewer with women’s historic and creative achievements that are passionately expressed through the artists’ innovative use of materials and perceptions.

 

 

 

Judith Schwab

Artist/curator

Women Collard for Work

j_art_schwab@comcast.net

www.judithschwab.com

cell phone:  302-545-5223

 

 


Women Collared for Work – Exhibition Space Needed

 

The Women Collared for Work exhibition could conceivably fill three small galleries or one large gallery of approximately 344 square feet.  This working estimate is subject to revision as the project plans become more detailed moving toward the targeted completion date of February 2008.  Final requirements and arrangements will be determined by the exhibit designer in consultation with Mrs. Schwab.

 

The projections listed below. are based upon the artists’ desired list of requirements for exhibit space.

 

Bernice Davidson:  Four (4) life-sized figurative busts require 100 square feet of interior floor space so visitors can comfortably walk around each vine figurative sculpture.

 

Marie Keane: Ten (10) feet of running wall space for three (3) mixed-media wall pieces honoring three early century Howard Pyle school professional illustrators.

 

Ann Stein:  Two (2) assemblage floor pieces using crates with objects inside and outside honoring Frances Perkins accomplishments require 100 square feet of interior floor space and two five inch high platforms.

 

Deborah Stelling:  Five (5) feet of running wall space for her four(4) intimate stitched acrylic wall pieces 10”h x 8”w X 2”d presenting ideas from Georgia O’Keefe and Eleanor Roosevelt.

 

Margo Allman:  Two (2) monochromatic calligraphic wall pieces 35”h x 27”w require six (6) feet of running wall space.

 

Judith Schwab:   Three (3) collages on canvas 18” x 18” square require six (6) feet of running wall space and three (3) sculptural hatboxes require pedestals for placement.  Width and depth of the hatboxes vary from twelve (12) to sixteen (16) inches and height from fifteen (15) to eighteen (18) inches requiring 100 square feet of floor space.

 

Wilma Bulkin Siegel, MD:  Five (5) wall pieces soft sculptures over torsos approximately 48 inches high by 24 inches wide require ten (10) feet of running wall space.

 

Rosemary Lane:  Five (5) figurative cast paper and wood wall reliefs require a total of twenty (20) feet of running or linear wall space.

 

Judith Schwab

Artist/curator

Women Collard for Work

j_art_schwab@comcast.net

www.judithschwab.com

cell phone:  302-545-5223

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