An exhibition interrogating collective perceptions of the feminine form
“Paying homage to the female form has long been the ethos for exalting natural beauty. Anything worthy of sentimental praise, be it for the sleekness of its physical proportions or the “maternal” comfort it guarantees has been imbued with feminine characterization and romanticized if only as a metaphor to chauvinism or the fabled unpredictability of women. Gender notwithstanding, visual artists defer instinctively to the alluring franchise of clean lines, curves, hues and a perpetual mystique recognisable or perceived as feminine. Quite often, the visual artist reserves a self-appointed right to objectify the feminine form, sometimes in optimistic solicitation of hope and other times as a warning knell of impending chaos.
The relevance of the artist as a storyteller or a saboteur of subjective reality is also innocuously enhanced by the not so innocent insights of the viewing public, which is why this exhibition is as much a salute to the intuition of creativity as it is a homily to the collective sensitivity of nature as a whole. As would be deductible from the exhibition’s title and theme, some of the featured works have been selected because they characteristically disable some of the cultural prejudices that befuddle our collective perception of taste and reality. Notwithstanding the occasional deference to the socio-political arguments for gender equality and balance, curatorial preferences were inevitably titled in favour of works that peel back our collective fascination with the female body language, without the pessimistic reservations of the moral prude or the fanatic self-effacing bias of the cultural anarchist.”
Richmond Ogolo, The Art and Antiques Barn, Lagos.