Reclaiming the Female Body: Adya Zecha

The feminist art movement in the twentieth century opened doors, not only for female artists, but for women across the world. The fight for liberation, equality and freedom is clear from both the Broude and Garrad reading as well as the documentary, Reclaiming the Female Body: Feminist Art in America, which allowed female artists to combat the stigma of what was considered ‘fine art’, and the belief that only men could be great artists and deserved the most praise and recognition. The documentary shed light on the beginnings of the feminist art movement, a movement that I, surprisingly, don’t know that much about, considering growing up after the movement began and being very aware of feminism in general.

The documentary showed the utter pride and determination the artists behind the movement had, and their passion to continue fighting for what they believed in was inspiring as a female artist. What I find the most interesting about the feminist art movement in America, is the shock factor used in many of their works, which adds to the depth of their argument. For example, one artist shown in the documentary used her own used tampons to create beautiful, vibrant prints, while brash in its concept, forces the viewer to be confronted with the reality of what men see as a weakness, bleeding, yet also represents the strength in women and the sheer beauty of something men consider so ‘wrong’.

Not only did the documentary inspire me to push the feminism in my own work but it also left me with a sense of pride in being a woman. I also thought that the idea of maintaining the fight for equality and feminist art, brought on by many of the artists in the documentary, and the need to continue shedding light on feminist art as generations come and go, is incredibly important if not necessary.

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