Re: [-empyre-] doubt

Hello, Regina,

It's great to hear your voice again and to hear about your thesis. I must say that I find it disappointing that books such as Judy's and a dissertation such as yours have been the recipients of some caustic comments for focusing on the production of women artists. It was not very long ago at all when the work of female artists was not the subject of critical commentary except for discussions of a handful of token "stars." And was it really that long ago when feminist artists banded together, such as VNS Matrix, to contest a predominantly phallologocentric technological discourse and art practice--the big daddy mainframe? While feminism is not synonymous with "female artist," the vast majority of the artists in Judy's book have broken new ground in gender studies, sexuality studies, and representation while also clearing a path of empowerment for younger female artists.

I, for one, find it empowering that writers such as Judy and Regina
have turned their attention to articulating the specificity and
difference of artwork produced by women artists.  Those of you who
have been trained or teach in  academic studio or art history
programs can probably spin many a tale about misunderstandings or
misconceptions of work created by women artists because of
assumptions or biases of male viewers and professors.  Of course, the
aims, context, or style of their work need not be gender specific.
But they sometimes clearly are.  Might we not wonder, for example,
why so few male artists have dealt with female history and its
relation to technological development as complexly as we see, say, in
Jill Scott's or Lynn Hershman's installations and net pieces?  And
what might we make of Horit Herman-Peled's identification in her
earlier piece (Gaza Checkpoint--which now seems to be offline) as "an
Israeli feminist point of view"?   It was the framing of this
viewpoint that was particularly important to me and Marilouise and
Arthur Kroker when we published "Chained Displacements" in the
CTHEORY Multimedia issue on "Wired Ruins: Digital Terror and Ethnic
Paranoia" (

While some empyreans might long for a utopian future in which
criticism, schools, and populations can ignore gender and sexual
difference, others probably join me in feeling fortunate to be led
through the maze of critical thought about gender difference by the
invigorating artists being discussed this month on empyre.




Well, what I really think is strange is the almost absence of men in this
discussion. Usually they are the majority here. There is no men writing
about "Man and technology" too. What I would like to ask is: - Is it really
prudent to our gender select and show works done only by women? Will not be
better if we could write about the two genders to have a wider discussion?

I wrote a  thesis* about three brazilian women and artists ( "Four views in
search of a reader, important women, art and identity"). As I have said
before I was looking for a feminine language in works done by women. I got
this, however I done this ten years ago and stop writing about women, just
because I began to think that my way was wrong. What do you all think about

And you Judy, who answer me somedays ago:

"In the book I tried to give each artist their own voice and to represent a
multiplicity of voices -- particularly
those who helped shape the field. I wanted to set forth the evidence of the
strong and influential work
women were doing in the field, in their own words and in the words of
critics and art networkers, such
as Anna Couey."

What do you think about my doubt?

* This thesis  had its  publication approved, what did not occur because of
the high costs of it (200 pages of colorful images and lots of texts (by
Lygia Clark) and images with copyright - the women I studied are
contemporary artists, only one of them is alive nowadays). I did not get a
sponsor and I do not like to cut my work or simplfy it. So that I gave up...

Regina Célia Pinto

empyre forum

Timothy Murray
Professor of Comparative Literature and English
Director of Graduate Studies in Film and Video
Curator, The Rose Goldsen Archive of New Media Art, Cornell Library
Co-Curator, CTHEORY Multimedia:
247 Goldwin Smith Hall
Cornell University
Ithaca, New York  14853

office: 607-255-4012

This archive was generated by a fusion of Pipermail 0.09 (Mailman edition) and MHonArc 2.6.8.