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Women Pop Artists
Female Pioneers at Work
28.09.2017 | Julie Sabau

Evelyne Axell, Le mur du son, 1966, oil on canvas, 200 x 200 cm

Women started to get involved in pop art as of the 1960s. Long considered as an Anglo-American movement, focussed around a limited group of male artists, it’s now a core element of a number of exhibitions (for instance The Ey exhibition, The World Goes Pop, Tate Modern, 2015-2016; Power Up, Female Pop Art, Kunsthalle de Vienne, 2011) bringing to light a parallel effervescence of female artistic initiatives around the world. By taking possession of pop aesthetics, they have pushed back the boundaries of art, particularly through the use of new materials, such as vinyl, for example, in the works of Nicola L (Woman Sofa, 1968), and Kiki Kogelnik (Hangings, 1970) or the plastic objects used by Martine Canneel (Good Luck, 1979) and Niki de Saint Phalle (Lucrezia, 1964). It’s a heterogeneous movement that’s taking shape, driven by common underlying concerns. From Renate Bertlmann (Exhibitionism, 1973) to Évelyne Axell (Ice cream, 1964), Eulàlia Grau (Panic (Ethnography), 1973) and Martha Rosler (Cleaning the Drapes, 1967-72), many have demonstrated their political or feminist commitments through their works. Women artists have thus enriched the Pop art movement with a subjective and subversive language.

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