BSC Artist Profile! Rachel Klinghoffer

First up in our BSC Artist Spotlight is the phenomenal artist Rachel Klinghoffer. Her work, based on "Femmage",  immediately struck a note with our collective.  To see more of Rachel's work go to:  http://www.rachelklinghoffer.com/

Rachel's thoughts on her process and feminism:

My process takes influence from “Femmage,” defined by Miriam Schapiro and Melissa Meyer in “Waste Not Want Not: An Inquiry Into What Women Saved and Assembled FEMMAGE,” (1)  as combining collage, assemblage, decoupage, photomontage, and bringing these traditionally feminine craft activities into the art historical context. The term Femmage takes ownership over the notion of “women’s work” in art without relying on male artists such as Picasso to bring collage into high art. I continue this lineage of women artists who utilize decoration as a means to elevate everyday ephemera into suggestive forms. I feel an ownership and pride in embracing these activities of pastiche as Femmage. I believe my work carries a contemporary femininity, which both acknowledges the past but also the multilayered nature of women today which can encompass both the Madonna and the whore and all shades of grey in- between. The works sit on the history of Femmage, as I am a woman who has collected, saved and recycled items that yield new forms. This complexity extends beyond notions of feminism, to encompass all individuals and celebrate their hybrid identities. The materials I use come from these myriad sources, reflecting different points of origin. I aim to pastiche this plethora of sources and processes in the hopes of being part of “making sure our visual culture is inclusive and diverse.” (2) For me, pastiche examines modes of appropriation and what that says about our past, as well as contemporary culture. It is an enabler to create new work out of the breadth of history. In the words of Dario Robleto from his manifesto I love rock and roll, there is “a romance with the world. This is what the aesthetics of sampling offer: a re- enchantment with the world .it is the creation of new meaning out of shards of the past". (3)

References: 
1 Miriam Schapiro and Melissa Meyer. “Waste Not Want Not: An Inquiry into What Women Saved and Assembled - FEMMAGE,” Heresis I, no. 4 (Winter 1977-78) 66-69.
2 Feministing, May 18, 2011, “The lack of progress for women in the art world”, http://feministing.com/2011/05/18/the-lack-of-progress-for-women-in-the-art-world/
3 Dario Robleto “I Love Everything Rock and Roll (except the music)”, Field Guide 1999-2000

 

Profile by Nancy Cook, BSC