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Coco Emmanuelle Wheeler

Foundation Diploma in Art and Design 2019 / 20

'Men Without Women' (1/7), Collage/performance. Shown at Atma, Hoxton 253 project space in January 2020.

Performance has provided the opportunity to empower feminist artists and release them from feelings and experiences of shame and mortification; to some extent it acts as a vehicle for these artists to ‘hang their shame on the walls’. A frequent criticism of these artistshas been assertions to the narcissism and exhibitionism that dissociates the art from being a representation of a collective feeling. These works suggest a direct challenge to this notion, playfully provoking these criticisms. The idea of absence is subverted; an absence becomes a tangible presence and an emotive space in which a layer of emotion and feeling is discovered. The playful act of removal transcends the solemnity of the traditional and iconic photos and their main focus: the presence of the man, and we are left to think about the woman’s relationship with herself.

I have been fascinated by the highly politicized history of photomontage and performance specifically. This film is an exploration of living in a narrative that has been endlessly transposed through history, one of purity and shame. With the wash of ink, a story is rewritten and freed from the paper.

'Bleeding in Eden'

'The Birth of Venus 1', Cyanotype

A collaged image from the French Académie des Beaux-Arts where countless, classical renditions of Venus were painted, informing how we view femininity, in all its grace and purity. Here, the life model is Venus and the men, her creators. 

'The Birth of Venus 2' cyanotype (bleached and toned)

'The Birth of Venus 3' Cyanotype (bleached and toned)

48 Sketchbook pages

Exploring private imagery and memory. Mother and child, classical and ‘pure’ in its ideals and composition, collaged with the imagery of a serpent, a symbol of a darker femininity, and fate

'An Angels Fate' Backlit negative framed 

'Men Without Women' (1/7), Collage/performance. Shown at Atma, Hoxton 253 project space in January 2020.

Performance has provided the opportunity to empower feminist artists and release them from feelings and experiences of shame and mortification; to some extent it acts as a vehicle for these artists to ‘hang their shame on the walls’. A frequent criticism of these artistshas been assertions to the narcissism and exhibitionism that dissociates the art from being a representation of a collective feeling. These works suggest a direct challenge to this notion, playfully provoking these criticisms. The idea of absence is subverted; an absence becomes a tangible presence and an emotive space in which a layer of emotion and feeling is discovered. The playful act of removal transcends the solemnity of the traditional and iconic photos and their main focus: the presence of the man, and we are left to think about the woman’s relationship with herself.

I have been fascinated by the highly politicized history of photomontage and performance specifically. This film is an exploration of living in a narrative that has been endlessly transposed through history, one of purity and shame. With the wash of ink, a story is rewritten and freed from the paper.

'Bleeding in Eden'

'The Birth of Venus 1', Cyanotype

A collaged image from the French Académie des Beaux-Arts where countless, classical renditions of Venus were painted, informing how we view femininity, in all its grace and purity. Here, the life model is Venus and the men, her creators. 

'The Birth of Venus 2' cyanotype (bleached and toned)

'The Birth of Venus 3' Cyanotype (bleached and toned)

48 Sketchbook pages

Exploring private imagery and memory. Mother and child, classical and ‘pure’ in its ideals and composition, collaged with the imagery of a serpent, a symbol of a darker femininity, and fate

'An Angels Fate' Backlit negative framed 

Categories
Drawing Film Photography