The search for a Feminist Utopia: Oakville Galleries

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Carrie Moyer, Queen Bee II, 2006, courtesy of the artist and CANADA, New York

Carrie Moyer, Queen Bee II, 2006, courtesy of the artist and CANADA, New York

The promise of utopia is nothing if not powerful. Since the advent of modernity, artists have grappled at length with the possibilities of what could be; from the Bauhaus school to Joseph Beuys, art has offered up countless visions of a radically new future.

In recent years, much critical attention has been paid to this role of the artist in sustaining the prospect of another world. These assessments, however, have often inadequately accounted for the rich histories of feminist engagement with utopia.

This spring Oakville Galleries presents a group exhibition titled After My Own Heart which brings together a group of artists whose works demonstrate an active commitment to feminist world-making. While the works in this show span several decades, the ideas, iconographies and ethos of 1960s and 1970s feminisms resonate throughout the exhibition. Whether contemplating separatism, gay liberation, central core imagery, or simply the power of pleasure, these works mine the potent radicalism of feminism’s second wave to create a vibrant utopian imaginary—a time and place envisioned, unrealized, but still very much longed for.

Allyson Mitchell, Ladies Sasquatch, 2005–2009, courtesy of the artist and Katharine Mulherin Contemporary Art Projects.

Allyson Mitchell, Ladies Sasquatch, 2005–2009, courtesy of the artist and Katharine Mulherin Contemporary Art Projects.

Featuring works by Barbara Hammer; Sharon Hayes, Kate Millett & Women’s Liberation Cinema; Onya Hogan-Finlay; Allyson Mitchell; Carrie Moyer; Ulrike Müller & Herstory Inventory; L.J. Roberts; and Elisabeth Subrin. The exhibition runs March 24th to May 18th, 2013.

After My Own Heart is the second in a series of exhibitions at Oakville Galleries that address key themes in contemporary feminist art practices. The opening of the exhibition takes place on Sunday, 24 March from 2:30 pm–3:30 pm at Oakville Galleries at Centennial Square, followed by a reception at Oakville Galleries in Gairloch Gardens from 3:30 pm–5:00 pm.

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