Monday, August 2nd, 2010
Judy Chicago’s "Venus"
I guess it’s pretty obvious that I’ve been researching prehistoric female figurines lately, huh? I promise this will be my last post on the subject, at least for a while! I just wanted to show everyone this cool Judy Chicago piece, Ceramic Goddess #3 (Study for Goddess Figurine on Fertile Goddess runner; 1977, shown above). Pretty fun, huh? It’s funky, playful shape makes me think that this could have been the prehistoric statuette from Lewis Carroll’s fictive “Wonderland.” Yep, that’s it: this is the Venus of Wonderland.
The shape also reminds me a little bit of Henry Moore‘s anthropomorphic style. (And speaking of Henry Moore, I’ve been thinking about how the replica of the prehistoric figurine “Venus de Lespugue” also reminds me Moore’s work.)
Anyhow, it’s neat to look at Chicago’s work and see how a 20th century feminist identified with the prehistoric figurines. Although today some question the prehistoric “goddess” theory, it’s interesting to think about how feminist activists latched onto this subject matter in the 1970s and 1980s. (You may be familiar with Judy Chicago’s well-known feminist work, The Dinner Party (1974-79)). You can read more about this female figurine and Judy Chicago here.