Feminist artist in Marin ditches Keats’s idea that “”Beauty is truth, truth beauty.” Instead, it’s all about anti-male political statements.
The Marin newspaper ran a glowing profile about a Marin “artist.” I was less impressed. You can read it for yourself here. Alternatively, I’ve got the highlights below.
The first thing you need to know about Lara Myers is that she’s got a very low rage threshold:
Like many women, Lara Myers isn’t too happy with the way President Trump treats women. But the tipping point came when Trump gestured to a Irish journalist while he was on the phone with the new prime minister of Ireland last summer, and complimented her on her nice smile — an exchange that was captured on video and went viral on social media.
“That enraged me. Here’s this woman at the top of her game, they picked her to come to the White House, and that kind of thing can happen,” she says.
Apparently the rage comes because she was triggered. Twenty five or so years ago, when she clerked at an allegedly high-end Chicago law firm, a partner looked her over and said something along the lines of “I see why you hired her.” Judging by the photo in the article, either the partner had low standards or she’s aged badly or that story just isn’t true. I know that’s catty of me to say, but let’s be honest here….
Still, the triggering was real and so this social justice warrior/artist came up with an idea: jewelry that repeats sexist things. She nudges other women until they remember some mild insult from decades before and then inscribes those statements on her . . . ahem . . . art:
“What I found by doing this and people telling me their stories, is that it’s spreading out the burden of the experience of the story,” she says. “Even wearing the necklace of someone else’s story does that.”
Many women don’t remember a lot of the details of an incident until she prompts them. Then, a much richer experience reveals itself.
“I have found that after they write down what happened to them, if I keep talking to them, all these other details come out,” she says. “I’m not interviewing them, it’s more of a conversation but that’s where a lot of these go. They start writing their stories and then the floodgates open.”
This isn’t Myers only “statement” project. She’s done a bunch of them:
For a recent project, “Gently Bang Your Head Against The Wall Here: An Installation About the 2016 Electoral College,” Myers crafted 538 fabric lips — “they signify our ability to speak, to be free and to stand up and publicize our views, emotions, thoughts and desires,” she writes — and placed them in a grid representing a map of the 2016 presidential electoral college results.
In “Fuel Fossils,” she explores our exponentially growing plastic waste problem. For “Get In The Car Kids, It’s Time to Go: IDPs, Refugees, Detainees and Deportees” she created a mock boutique that features baby and toddler clothing whose tags explain refugee and immigration issues.
Unsurprisingly, at least according to the newspaper article, the art world is embracing Myers’ work. It is “provocative” and, more importantly, although nobody admits that explicitly, it comes from a hard Left place, whether on male-female relationships, immigration, environmentalism, or the fact that Trump won fair and square. I could take a piece of my dog’s poop, label it “Ramifications of Trump’s Mental Processes” and probably get a grant.
Incidentally, regarding the fact that men are predators and that men who are less, rather than more, nice will take advantage of women, I saw a stunner of a scene in an old movie I was watching. The movie is called Having Wonderful time. That was false advertising. It’s a lousy movie, in part because Douglas Fairbanks Jr. simply lacked the chops to carry off his role as the male romantic lead. Nevertheless, it was interesting as a time capsule.
The movie was made in 1938 and tells the tale of a New York typist (Ginger Rogers) who heads of to what is supposed to be a quiet and peaceful camp for her annual two-week vacation. The place, of course, is a madhouse, but she meets Douglas Fairbanks, Jr., and yadda, yadda, yadda.
What I want to talk about is the scene in which Rogers and a friend take the subway home after work. The ride is insanely crowded, and Ginger and her friend end up riding alongside two young men who take an inappropriate interest in Ginger and her friend. The way the scene is shot, the two actresses are in the foreground, and the men are standing immediately behind them. The two women continue to talk, ignoring the men. Suddenly, the not-Ginger actress gets a shocked expression on her face: her eyes pop open and her mouth says, “Whoa!” She instantly reaches up to the flower on her lapel, removes the pin, props it between her fingers so its sticking upwards from her palm, and slams her hand backwards. The men behind her gives an agonized yelp, the two women smile, and the scene ends.
It seems to me that the way that scene played out is much more satisfying, and less likely to leave one perpetually triggered, than doing an art installation with engravings of obnoxious things men say. Ginger Rogers had a wonderful career. Myers is “enraged” when the President says someone has a lovely smile.
Incidentally, Myers doesn’t get the love from many of those who left comments on the Marin IJ story. A few samples:
This gives me a really good idea to make necklaces that have little sayings on them too. I’m going to call it the “crazy things feminists say” collection. If my wife didn’t hate tacky things like that, I’m pretty sure she would wear one.
Perfect for those in the Jane Fonda age range, who can display the types of comments they wish they still got.
The following three comments are all from the same person, writing three different times:
I recommend a follow-up series stemming from things women say about each other.
Men are of course the obvious targets of this driveby, kneejerk attack piece, and to be clear, any man who trafficks in sexist comments does so at his own risk and assumes full ownership, however, what of the other contributors to this climate? Does Myers find the harlots like Nicki Minaj, Katie Perry, and Beyoncé to be empowering, while they peddle their sexuality in constant states of cheap undress and availability? They direct our attention to their most base and physical attributes. They celebrate men who will treat them rough, cheat on them, slap them and pull their hair. They beg for cheap sex without commitments and offer easy access to animal instincts? Why should we just attack men for the disrespect for women that is being earned by so called-high profile females who perform at the super bowl and frequented Obama’s white house? hollywood 50 shades of grey trying to make sadomasochism mainstream. No doesn’t mean no, it seems. SF bondage and leather now a “historical district”? Any responsibility on the part of a hypocritical media which peddles this garbage as commonplace to our young men and women and then gets offended and outraged when convenient? Or should we just blame Trump? Are there any non-political artists that the IJ will give a voice to, or must they all be “Trump resistors”?
I think the definition of sexism has been twisted by man-haters of late.
Compliments on anything other than one’s work function are now an “attack”?
Scowled at if you hold a door open for the wrong lesbian..
What’s it all coming to?
Ladies that like being treated like ladies need to raise a voice of moderation here.
Nothing like wearing politics around your neck to make me purr.