THE AESTHETICS OF FEMINIST CREATIVITY
curated by Silvia Pezzati, University of Bologna
5th - 15th May
Richard Hoggart Building
The installation consists of 6 artworks created using a mixture of painting, collaging, illustration, cut and pasting, scrapbooking and visual mapping.
On the one hand, the installation explores the articulation of aesthetics through issues of ideology, class and gender. On the other, thanks to its art exhibition-like appearance and the pastiche of techniques it embodies the debate about what can be considered as art, hinting at how popular forms of creativity can provide a challenge to legitimate beauty.
The installation works as a visual representation of the theoretical discussion around the sphere of the aesthetics, drawing attention to its social implications.
Key theoretical themes are introduced: Gendered bodies as subjects of internalised political power. Performative and gendered bodies and their potential for challenging gender norms through gender itself. The human body as a key concept of aesthetics. Aesthetic experience and the spheres of sensuousness and affectivity. The affective ways in which the appreciation of beauty has come to acquire an ideological role in the silent imposition of class interests. Aesthetic taste as a marker of class distinction. The cultural dimension of social inequality. The role played by class in the sphere of affect and emotions, and in relation to the sensuous concept of aesthetics. An aesthetic response to ideological positions of class and gender, outside of 'true' and legitimate beauty.
The visual overload, together with the unusual materials and presentation, create a contrast with the severity of traditional art.
Frivoloty, silliness, messiness and everyday aesthetics are reclaimed as serious and valid.
The installation also lays the philosophical foundation of our start up creative business Create Mood.
Founded by Rosa Crepax (Department of Sociology, Goldsmiths), Carlotta Crepax (ICCE, Goldsmiths), Francesca Mazzucchi (Department of Design, Goldsmiths) and Silvia Pezzati (DAMS, University of Bologna), Create Mood seeks to bring the sphere of affect and emotions back at the centre of the aesthetic experience.
In contrast to the way in which, in Western society, in the wake of Kantian philosophy, the appreciation of beauty has come to be perceived in terms of disinterested judgement, on the basis of pure and objective taste, we believe it is intertwined with problematic dynamics of legitimation, delegitimation, inclusion and exclusion.
We want to remove art and the aesthetics from the aseptic space of the gallery or the museum, as well as from the dominant context that constructs them as the prerogative of the educated, well-off privileged few. While insightful critiques associated with the Frankfurt School have taught us to see popular culture as a manifestation of the capitalist ideology, depriving people of imagination and creativity, we want to rediscover its subversive and aesthetic potential. Blossoming from low forms of culture, our idea of aesthetics transforms art into an affective experience outside of the norms of legitimate taste, which anyone can take part in, and which everyone can live out, through creativity and fun.
From a feminist and intersectional perspective, Create Mood also aims at offering women of any social and ethnic background, but also gender and sexual identity, the possibility to emerge in the male-dominated art world.