Just in time for Valentine’s Day, the Women in the City “exhibit” has reenacted feminist art from the seventies and eighties all around Los Angeles.
Cindy Sherman’s billboards of herself as a faux B-movie star loom over Hollywood & Highland. Jenny Holzer’s grids of neon colored posters plaster quotations from revolutionary leaders all over town. Louise Lawler fills the Huntington Library’s botanical gardens with birdcalls based on the names of famous male artists. And on video billboards on Sunset Boulevard and at LACMA West, Barbara Kruger’s “Plenty” is a montage of images and text messages for passing drivers.
The works are part of “Women in the City,” a “viral public art exhibition” in the streets of Los Angeles that unfolds throughout the month. Featuring Sherman, Holzer, Lawler and Kruger, the project is intended to celebrate the first generation of women artists to attain widespread success in the art world and to bring their work to an even larger audience.
I’m most excited about the Sherman billboards, but I also intend to check out Louise Lawler’s bird call piece at the Huntington Library. The L.A. Weekly has a comprehensive address list for all the pieces.
As with anti-war protest rock, though, I have to ask–where is the modern feminist art? As far as I can tell, while women have made great societal strides, the way they’re neglected by our healthcare system, the continual prominence of rape, and the inequalities in female to male pay still prove that the need for feminism is far from over. So is its art.