Seduced by Subversion at the Brooklyn Museum.


A detail from Rosalyn Drexler’s Home Movies. (Photos by C-M.)

There are paintings with balls. And there are paintings with tubes. You’ll find the latter at the Brooklyn Museum’s show Seductive Subversion: Women Pop Artists 1958-1968. And thank goodness. This ably assembled little show makes you realise just how much the art world is dominated by sausage, because there’s no other explanation for why I haven’t seen more of these talented ladies, some of whom have some wildly acerbic views on men, the art world and their own bodies. (No earnest vag art here.) There’s been some debate among the critical set about how ‘pop’ many of the works in the show truly are. But, honestly, who cares? The exhibit contains some underseen, underappreciated, totally twisted gems. If you’ve OD’d on ’60s go-tos like Warhol, Lichtenstein and Oldenburg, then hit the Brooklyn Museum for fresh kick-you-in-the-ass perspective.

Seductive Subversion is on through Jan. 9. Check it out.


Home Movies, the full view.


Woman With Jump Rope, by Idelle Weber.


A detail from Munchkins I, II & II, also by Weber, which was based on images of commuters at Manhattan’s old Pan Am building.


Weber’s clear plastic cubes, lined with silhouettes of ’60s men – making a visual connection to Mad Men’s graphic design almost inevitable.


Pauline Boty’s Big Jim Colosimo, painted circa 1963.


Ridiculous Portrait of the Queen, 1965-72, by May Wilson. I managed to catch a piece of video in one of the side galleries which featured an interview with Wilson — who seemed amazingly sassy. The photos of herself that she collaged into existing images were often taken at cheap photo booths.


Accumulation No. 1, by Yayoi Kusama, from 1962.


An advert for Kusama’s ‘Body Festival,’ from 1967.


Vicious Red Circle, 1968, by Evelynne Axelle.


For All Their Innocent Airs They Know Exactly Where They’re Going, 1968, by Kay Kurt. The size of this canvas, and the garishness of the candies, is truly astonishing when you see it in person.


Scatter, 1967-72, by Martha Rosler — a collage that remains strikingly poignant four decades later.


A detail from the painting Newspaper II, by Chryssa, a work from 1961 — an early pop experiment with typography and newsprint. (Warhol had begun his newspaper-inspired pieces the year before this was made.)


Rear view of The Bicycle Riders, a 1962 sculpture by Marisol.


There is something amazingly demented about Rosalyn Drexler’s isolated fragments of pop culture that I really admire. I liked her work even more when Brent Burket told me that Drexler had once wrestled under the name of Rosa Carlo, The Mexican Spitfire. Above, her 1963 canvas, The Bite.

3 comments

  1. c-monster

    what didn’t you like about it? i seriously dug it. (even if those gallery spaces are terribly awkward.)