Pinned Stitched and Glitzed: Challenging Gender Stereotypes

The Anya and Andrew Shiva Gallery
   John Jay College of Criminal Justice,
   proudly presents the exhibition

September 9 – November 13, 2015

Opening reception on Wednesday, September 30, 2015, from 5:30-7:30 PM

with performance by modern dance icon Sincha Hong at 6:00pm

            Unlike sexuality that comes from within the individual, gender role is formed through parental, peer, school and social influences. Many of our early views of life come from the first teachers we encounter. Often our first taste of socially held beliefs such as girls look pretty and are passive, while boys do and are active, are provided to us at this early age. It is important for children to develop strong egos in their socialization phase that can withstand peer and social pressure and to continue in creating healthy relationships.

            With this exhibition largely comprised of delicately appliqued, sewn, pinned and woven works, we are challenging traditionally assigned sex roles and preconceived notions about what are and are not female or male work practices. Consequently, we hope to dispel traditional gender assignations to the work of these artists working with methods traditionally considered as “women’s work” because they are delicately and painstakingly produced.

 Eozen Agopian for example sews her artworks, a task usually attributed to women, yet she seeks to cross the border of art and objecthood by alluding to painting in her fabric works. Renee Magnanti’s patterns serve her as leitmotifs in producing works that are interlaced, crisscrossed, or interwoven like fiber art. She combines ethnic patterns in her effort to help us see the common bond between peoples of different geographic backgrounds. The making of Nicholas Moore’s highly embellished canvasses was greatly impacted through his rearing by parents in the fashion industry. Moore’s mixed media works are encrusted and worked with glittery materials that because of their fragile nature may wrongly be considered feminine in gender stereotyping. Ran Hwang’s work has also been influenced by fashion for it consists of thousands of pinned buttons formulating her subjects that range from Buddhist temples, to spiders and plum blossoms. Hwang partakes of the theory of opposites as in the yin and yang of her native Korean country and because of her background in Buddhist philosophy reflects upon the ephemerality of life. Maria Karametou creates intricate, exquisite and dainty pieces that in their fragility signal what would be popularly taken as feminine embroidery. Karametou’s work is multifaceted, however, and juxtaposes the delicate nature of what might be found in a female’s dowry in Ancient Greece against the cold, metallic, métier with her title’s references to war or conflict.

These five artists were used as examples to break with past models of gender classification embracing the individual aesthetic and unique working method of each show participant. At its core the exhibition questions the idea of ‘women’s work’ by suggesting that it is a social construct perhaps in the service of making the male feel more powerful. It should also take us one step further into de-constructing the traditional stereotypes that in the past have excluded trans-sexuals, and gays.

In conjunction with this exhibition, the celebrated and renowned modern dance icon Sincha Hong (b. 1943-) will be in the United States and present a performance with which to celebrate the opening of this show. Hong lived and worked in the United States from the late 1960s until 1990, founding the Laughing Stone Dance Company in New York City in 1981. She returned to live in South Korea in 1990 collaborating with the gayageum (twelve-string Plucked Zither) player Hwang Byungki. She is considered the first avant-garde dancer in Korea working in a minimalist manner in her bold and minimal short and evening long productions that have been lauded by prestigious magazines and press in Korea and abroad including reviews by the New York Times.

Curated by: Thalia Vrachopoulos

For more information please contact:

The Anya and Andrew Shiva Gallery
John Jay College
860 11th Avenue
New York, NY 10019
gallery@jjay.cuny.edu
212-237-1439

Gallery Hours: 1- 5 PM, M – F, or by appointment

About John Jay College of Criminal Justice: An international leader in educating for justice, John Jay College of Criminal Justice of The City University of New York offers a rich liberal arts and professional studies curriculum to upwards of 15,000 undergraduate and graduate students from more than 135 nations. In teaching, scholarship and research, the College approaches justice as an applied art and science in service to society and as an ongoing conversation about fundamental human desires for fairness, equality and the rule of law. For more information, visit www.jjay.cuny.edu.

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Panel Discussion on Human Trafficking

                                                                       Image by Steven Cavallo, Hope and Memory, 2011

Tuesday, March 3rd, 2015 5:30-7:30 PM

Why:

To discuss human trafficking in sync with exhibit Of Human Bondage at the Anya and Andrew Shiva gallery

Where:

Anya and Andrew Shiva Gallery

John Jay College of Criminal Justice, CUNY

860 West 11TH Avenue New York, NY 10019

212-237-1439 gallery@jjay.cuny.edu

The distinguished panelists include:

Moderator: Continue reading

Assenting Voices: Agitprop Art from North Korea

Image by Cheol Ung Hong “Woman” , 2012

Assenting Voices: Agitprop Art from North Korea.

at the Anya and Andrew Shiva Gallery
John Jay College of Criminal Justice, CUNY
860  11 Avenue
New York, NY 10019

OPENING RECEPTION:
November 12, 2014
from 5:30-7:30pm
ON DISPLAY:

November 12th, 2014 through January 23rd, 2015

Assenting Voices: Agitprop Art from North Korea is of seminal importance being one of a few exhibitions of its kind in the west to show formerly inaccessible North Korean art. The paintings and posters in this show feature celebrations of the North Korean regime and its Juche (Self-Reliance) philosophy. Consequently, and because of the morphological and political similarity of the works it is up to the viewer to surpass what is obvious to discern the underlying message. When the Korean art scholar Jane Portal recently visited an exhibition of North Korean Art in Vienna, she asserted “we’ve seen it all in terms of totalitarian societies.” “But” she continued, “this is the last bastion of this kind of thinking that’s bound to disappear. That’s why it’s so important for it to be seen and collected for posterity.”

The depiction of didactic subjects containing pageants, smiling children, hymn-singing youths, street and domestic scenes, upbeat girls and marching men are typical subjects of artists trained in North Korea in propaganda art defined by the government’s needs. This type of vernacular art as was also the case in the Soviet Union remains the paradigm for Socialist Realism in North Korea. In its dramatic, monumental scaled, message-laden tenor this art is meant to arouse comradery firing up as it does nationalistic fervor for the ultimate purpose of the Korean reunification, to maintain order and loyalty to the government and to the revolutionary struggle, and to show the superiority and independence of North Koreans. Cultural expression is part of everyday life and Art Propaganda squads go to the provinces to cheer on workers with songs and poetry and to congratulate them for their creativity as well as to inspire them towards ever greater successes especially during so called ‘speed battles’ meant to increase production. Continue reading