One to Another

December 5, 2009

12/05/09 “Couples Discourse”

Filed under: 5-Related Topics — pendantportraits @ 4:33 pm

The exhibition, “Couples Discourse,” was co-curated by Micaela Amateau and Robinson; and was on exhibition at the Palmer Museum of Art at Pennsylvania State University from October 10 through December 22, 2006.  Here is the PSU Press’ synopsis of the exhibition catalog:

“In his book A Lover’s Discourse, Roland Barthes attempted to theorize the language used by lovers to describe each other. It is arguably a text about loneliness, suggesting that even romantic language confesses the distance that always exists between people-if we could achieve perfect unity with others, language would not be necessary. This book is about how “couples” discourse-about the ways in which artists cope with the social connections and practicalities of being artists in a couple. It is about the commonalities as well as the differences, the intimacies as well as the public articulations-in other words, the negotiations that are required in any relationship.

It might be a truism to say that the very notion of “the couple” is undergoing significant transformation at the moment. Legal changes now allow many same-sex marriages in the United States, even as increasing numbers of people both gay and straight choose to enjoy unions and family structures beyond such conventional forms. Now is, of course, the perfect time to investigate more carefully the ways in which artists construct and articulate their position as “couples.” Co-curated by Joyce Henri Robinson, curator, and Micaela Amato, professor of art and women’s studies, Penn State, Couples Discourse features work by twenty-one artist-couples including ~

Eleanor and David Antin,                    Nene Humphrey and Benny Andrews,     Patricia Cronin and Deborah Kass,

Joyce and Max Kozloff,                        Helen and Brice Marden,                             Gladys Nilsson and Jim Nutt,

Lisa Sigal and Byron Kim,                   Nancy Spero (recently widowed),               Roy Dowell and Lari Pittman,

Julie Burleigh and Catherine Opie,    Deborah Willis (recently divorced),          Betty and George Woodman,

Sylvia Plimack Mangold and Robert Mangold.”

Jana Emmer told me about this exhibition. I met her at SECAC 2009 in Mobile while waiting for the conference bus to take us to the Mobile Museum of Art. I’ll make a faculty request for the catalog to be purchased for the college’s collection.


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