Drawing was a feminist issue in 1976. That spring, a group of artists led by Nancy Spero picketed MoMA and the Guggenheim to protest the lack of women in two major surveys of contemporary drawing. Meanwhile, drawing was becoming a crucial strategy for the artists who made up the all-female cooperative A. I. R. Gallery, including Judith Bernstein, Blythe Bohnen, Agnes Denes and Howardena Pindell.
This talk emphasizes the heterogeneity of feminist drawing practices of this period, which reinvigorated traditions of figuration and the graffito along with the systematic procedures of Conceptual art. Like the figures in Bohnen’s self-portraits—in which she “drew” with the points of light reflected in her eyes—feminist drawing emerged as a dynamic and manifold presence in the art of the 1970s.
Marking the launch of Anna Lovatt’s new book Drawing Degree Zero: The Line from Minimal to Conceptual Art (Penn State University Press, 2019), the talk will be followed by a Q&A between the author and Jo Applin.
Anna Lovatt is Assistant Professor of Art History at Southern Methodist University, Dallas. She has published extensively on modern and contemporary drawing and is the author of Drawing Degree Zero: The Line from Minimal to Conceptual Art (Penn State University Press, 2019) and Michelle Stuart: Drawn from Nature, (Hatje Cantz, 2013), which accompanied an exhibition of the same name. Her current research focuses on networks of kinship in contemporary art, beginning with the Two Stage Transfer Drawings Dennis Oppenheim produced with his children in the 1970s.
Organised by Dr Jo Applin (The Courtauld)