Sunday, August 21, 2005

Barbara Kruger

Barbara Kruger is an internationaly renowned conceptual aritst whose work focuses on domestic violence, women's rights and issues of power. Now, I'm not a rampant feminist (I lack one of the key qualifications of being a woman), but I popped along to her latest installation in Glasgow on Friday and I was blown away by her work.

I honestly have to say I hadn't heard of this woman before going to this exhibition, but from what I've been reading about her over the weekend, she has typically presented her case in stark posters with bold colours (often red and white).

The latest installation at the Gallery of Modern Art (GoMA) in Glasgow is a shift to green and white and comprises a room with all the surfaces covered with blunt messages such as "You stone my face and harden my heart" and part covered in newspaper articles concerning recent cases of violence against women. Some of it (i.e. "Who will write the history of tears?") may border on the pretentious, but I couldn't help being blown away by her work; it's the first "issue based" contemporary art in a while that's actually been able to properly convey its message to me.

- Barbara Kruger is exhibiting at GoMA, Glasgow as part of their 'Rules of Thumb: Contemporary Art and Human Rights" series, until 26th September.

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