Nancy Brooks Brody/Joy Episalla/Zoe Leonard/Carrie Yamaoka: fierce pussy amplified

arms ache avid aeon: Nancy Brooks Brody/Joy Episalla/Zoe Leonard/Carrie Yamaoka: fierce pussy amplified
September 13 – December 22, 2019
Institute of Contemporary Art at the University of Pennsylvania, USA.

This exhibition offers unprecedented insight into the distinct yet interconnected artistic practices of Nancy Brooks Brody, Joy Episalla, Zoe Leonard, and Carrie Yamaoka, the four artists who formed the New York-based queer art collective fierce pussy in 1991. Conceived as an opportunity to illuminate the unique approach and cultural output created by each artist, the exhibition features work culled from three decades of their distinctly solo – yet communally resonant – practices. Photography, painting, drawing, video, sculpture, and installation created by each artist are contextualized in the work of fierce pussy on display in the living archive section of the show that includes archival materials highlighting their pioneering history, fostering dialogue between individual and collective cultural production.

Founded in response to the AIDS epidemic, which is still ongoing, fierce pussy raised public awareness of lesbian identity and visibility during a decade of increasing political mobilization around gay rights. The archival material exhibited in arms ache avid aeon: fierce pussy amplified captures the urgency of their formative years and showcases the use of low-budget and low-tech materials that were readily available to the artists during that time that continue to inform the collective’s work through the present day. Informed by their politics, the artists push the boundaries of their chosen media rather than employ political content as subject matters. The exhibition explores and gestures towards moments of joy and connection in the face of overwhelming loss through the deep and complex investigation of time, material, and perception. Offering up multiple possibilities and interpretations of the artists’ work and advocating for a sustainability between art and political activism, the exhibition broadens a timely conversation on what it means to be an individual in a collective world.
A traveling exhibition originating from the Beeler Gallery at Columbus College of Art & Design as four chapters of continuously changing artworks, ICA presents arms ache avid aeon: fierce pussy amplified as a fifth chapter with a new selection of artworks that demonstrates the transition of the exhibition between different institutional venues.

This exhibition is organized by the Beeler Gallery at Columbus College of Art & Design’s Director of Exhibitions Jo-ey Tang, and organized with Associate Director of Exhibitions Ian Ruffino, and Registrar Marla Roddy. The exhibition will be organized at ICA by Kate Kraczon, Laporte Associate Curator.


Tagged Artists in This Post: