The Untitled Space gallery is pleased to present “Secret Garden: The Female Gaze on Erotica” a group exhibition of female identifying artists exploring figurative works of nudes and erotic art. Curated by Indira Cesarine, the exhibit will be on view from June 27th – July 30th and will include works of painting, drawing, photography, printmaking, pottery, sculpture, collage, mixed media and video.
The exhibit title is inspired by the book, “My Secret Garden”, published in 1973 by sex positive feminist author Nancy Friday who was instrumental in addressing taboos revolving around female sexuality in the early 70s and an important figure of the feminist sexual liberation movement. Through historical works of pioneering feminist artists such as Betty Tompkins and Joan Semmel, to that of emerging contemporary female artists such as Andrea Mary Marshall, India Munuez, Myla Dalbesio, Katie Commodore, and Leah Schrager, Secret Garden presents works by taboo shattering artists who fearlessly address sexual themes in their art and celebrate freedom of expression.
Along with the legalization of birth control in the 1960’s came a profound shift in attitudes towards women’s sexuality and the freedom of sexual expression. The sexual revolution celebrated the erotic as a normal part of life, and denounced conservative attitudes that it should be repressed by a patriarchal society, religion or state. From a feminist perspective the movement focused on a woman’s right to choose her sexual partners and preferences free from outside interference or judgment. As women’s sexuality was redefined, many artists of the era, including Betty Tompkins and Joan Semmel, addressed these themes in their works, and fought against censorship and oppression.