What are you looking at
Lena Rosa Händle, Csilla Klenyánski, Martina Stapf, Suzannah Linnekin & Hannah Welever
curated by Sophie Haslinger
das weisse haus, Hegelgasse 14, 1010 Vienna
Opening: May 16, 2018 at 7pm.
Duration: May 17 – June 30, 2018
Provocative, flirtatious, inviting—the exhibition title What are you looking at can be read as both a question and a statement, and refers to aspects of observing as well as being observed. This group exhibition assembles positions by artists who work with depictions of the female body and gender representations using photographic and filmic self-representation. The artists subvert art history’s traditional conception of the artist’s studio—male artist, female model—since both the artists and models in this exhibition are female, and the artists happen to be their own models.
Photography and feminism have long been closely linked and develop(ed) mutually. Feminist avant-garde artists used photography to visualize personal experiences—especially in regard to their own bodies. The artists of this exhibition operate within a contemporary environment in which the construct of self-representation has reached a peak with the advent of social media, occupying their image spaces in self-determined poses. Their bodies engage in a dialog with the camera, the photographic material, and not least the viewer. The works on display examine the borders between identity and functionality of the female body, as well as the expectations and realities placed upon them. Because the artists represent themselves in front of and for the camera, they touch on the duality of subject and object, self-image and external image. They appropriated cultural codes from advertisements, art history, social policy, and the media, and recharged them from a critical, queer-feminist, personal, playful, and humorous perspective.
text Sophie Haslinger