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April 9, 2004

 

MEDIA CONTACT: 

Matt Lindsay: (202) 994-1423; mlindsay@gwu.edu                                                                                           

GW M.F.A. STUDENT IN PHOTOGRAPHY PRESENTS CHALLENGING WORK IN ASPHYXIATION OF GENDERFICATION: BLURRING BOUNDARIES

 

Exhibition in GW's Dimock Gallery Opens April 20

 

EVENT:         

 

The George Washington University Dimock Gallery and the Department of Fine Arts and Art History present Asphyxiation of Genderfication: Blurring Boundaries, a master of fine arts (M.F.A.) thesis show by Mary Coble.   

 

WHEN:          

 

Opening Reception: Tuesday, April 20, 2004, 5-7 p.m.

Exhibition Dates: Tuesday, April 20 - Friday, April 30, 2004

Gallery hours: Tuesday - Thursday, 11 a.m.-1 p.m.; Friday, 11 a.m.-3 p.m.

 

WHERE:        

 

The George Washington University

Dimock Gallery, Lower Lisner Auditorium

730 21st Street, NW, Washington, D.C.

(Foggy Bottom/GW Metro, Blue and Orange lines)

 

COST:            

 

Free and open to the public.  For more information call (202) 994-1525.

 

BACKGROUND:

 

"Gender" is the premise of this body of work: how people display gender and how others perceive it.  Not all people accept the dichotomous paradigm society has created.  Some individuals, by the simple act of living their lives in a way that feels natural, eliminate an either/or way of understanding and classifying gender and break down the boundaries that have been constructed.  Others take a more activist approach and resist fitting into a single category.  The combination of these approaches, the variety of ways in which people choose to express themselves, is what is needed to redefine gender, to make it less rigid, more fluid.

 

This exhibition is both powerful and provocative.  Coble employs a variety of artistic methods to address these important issues, from a series of vivid color images that portray drag king performances in several local clubs to a video component that depicts Coble systematically applying duct tape to her breasts and tearing it off for approximately one hour with a simultaneous video of a small audience watching.  The purpose of the work is not its mere shock value, but its ability to raise questions about society and the assumptions and biases placed on people.  Asphyxiation of Genderfication asks society to rethink the concept of gender and allow for fluidity without boundaries.

 

Coble's work builds on a history of body and endurance art.  Such artists used their own and others' bodies to break down barriers between "art" and "life." Coble has been influenced by Catherine Opie's "Self-Portraits;" images of drag kings by Del LaGrace Volcano; performance/endurance work by Vito Acconci, Gina Pane, Bob Flanagan, Yoko Ono, and Ulay and Marina Abromovic; Robert Mapplethorpe and Nan Goldin, who also portrayed their communities/families in an unabashed manner.

 

For more information about the University Art Galleries, call (202) 994-1525.

For more news about GW, visit the GW News Center at www.gwnewscenter.org.

 

- GW -

 

 
 

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