Rhona Hoffman Gallery is pleased to present Women on Verge, curated by Lisa Wainwright. The exhibition includes works by 27 artists and examines the prevalence in painting today of eccentric sendups of women by those who identify as women. With the hearty return of figurative painting in the last decade, it seems timely to take the pulse of a facet of feminist expression that currently lampoons the female body. Wrestling with the grand tradition of the bather and the reclining nude in art history, these distorted and contorted sisters are a convulsive response to the myriad pressures within a society on the verge of a nervous breakdown, as Pedro Almodóvar prophetically put it in his film of 1982. Such visual rhetorics speak to the concerns of those breaking the colonial gaze, or those queering representation, or those asserting a satirical engagement with heteronormative poses, or some intersection of all. Our current climate of judiciary conservativism with the abolition of Roe vrs. Wade makes such images of torqued women all the more timely to assess.
Lisa Wainwright is a professor in the Department of Art History, Theory and Criticism at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. She served as Dean of Faculty for over ten years and in other major leadership roles including Dean of the Graduate Programs for five years. As a professor in the Department of Art History, Lisa has authored numerous articles in books and international professional journals, as well as developed an extensive list of exhibition catalogues, and curated multiple exhibitions. She has published and lectured on topics from Robert Rauschenberg and the history of the found object in art, to contemporary art and feminism, as well as on the subjects of education and creativity. Dr. Wainwright received her Bachelor of Arts, cum laude, from Vanderbilt University, and earned both a Masters and a PhD from the University of Illinois.