Date: Sunday, October 20
Address: Intersect Arts Center, 3636 Texas Ave, Studio 323, St. Louis, MO, 63118
Media: Installation, Photography, Time-based Media
Studio Features: ADA Accessible, Child-Friendly, Restroom, Refreshments
I smash pink harmonicas with pink milkshake glasses and tear pink nametags off of my chest. My work explores and interrogates the gender performativity of female niceness.
Using a sickeningly sweet aesthetic, I subvert this phenomenon using the language women have traditionally been given – flowers, pattern, and an overload of pink. We are taught to smile and nod. We are seen as the comforters. And we say “sorry” too much “and um this really isn’t a big deal,” don’t we?
Femininity is equated with niceness. Niceness is synonymous with being constantly agreeable. Niceness is not speaking your mind. Niceness is possessing low self-confidence. This schema of femininity creates a world in which women must fight to get heard, to push back against harassment and microaggressions – yet are punished if they do.
My moving images and photographs work demonstrate tension in response to this dynamic through uncomfortable moments dripping in pink. A teapot keeps pouring. The cup is spilling over. The cake never makes it to the plates. I violently pull the flower petals off. Through creating disruption in these “nice,” and pink scenes, I call attention to the pervasiveness of the expectation of this singular femininity.