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the world of agnès b. / point d'ironie
- Special issue : Nancy Spero

Artist Nancy Spero (American, born 1926) has
been living in New York since the 1950s.
Her highly respected body of work celebrates the
place of women in society and powerfully comments
on oppressive political situations. In her project for
point d’ironie, Spero recycles found imagery from
her collection of female icons (past and present) to
suggest points of connection between the archetypal
and the commonplace world of contemporary
living. Thus we find Ancient Egyptian flute and
lyre players as well as contemporary athletes, some of
whom seem to be migrating, leaving their support,
literally dancing off the paper. She puts mythology
into motion in a non-academic way that points to
enlarging our vision of feminine roles.
Nancy Spero in conversation with Hans Ulrich
Obrist: … I have done over two dozen wall
installations in various cities. I had some
unimaginable spaces to work in, and the more
irregular the better. I wasn’t interested in the white
box of the museum. For a while, my main work
was hand printing on the walls with a system I
devised, using a soft material, a polymer, like a
rubber plate, and pushing them on the wall. It’s
very trenchant. It was like an invited graffiti…
and it’s mostly nomadic, because once the show is
over, it gets painted over. It’s totally finished except
for the documentation.
It’s such a great contrast to work in the reduced
space of the point d’ironie. In the point d’ironie
the figures -- the running ones and the static ones
-- are playing around the space; they have a
floating identity. The smaller figures are
miniatures of the others, scaled down populations
from my “jewel boxes”. They are like jewels in a
way because to prepare them, I had to use a very
technical, almost surgical procedure. They go from
the antique to the contemporary. I don’t know
about the futuristic yet, because everything is
subsumed in the present.

Numerospecial_nancyspero

 
 
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