image

Coco Fusco: University Galleries
October 26 - December 18, 2016
Image: installation view, 2016

Coco Fusco included in Strange Oscillations and Vibrations of Sympathy curated by Kendra Paitz at the University Galleries, Illinois State University, Normal, IL.

Artists: Jen Bervin, Stephanie Brooks, Anne Collier, Bethany Collins, Moyra Davey, Marcelline Delbecq, Abigail DeVille, Eve Fowler, Dianna Frid, Coco Fusco, Sabina Ott, Melissa Pokorny, Dawn Roe, Kay Rosen, Carrie Schneider, Xaviera Simmons, Lisa Tan, Cecilia Vicuña, Catherine Wagner, Carrie Mae Weems, Deborah Willis

Strange Oscillations and Vibrations of Sympathy features work by contemporary female artists that acknowledge or reference women writers. The exhibition's title is derived from a sentence Sylvia Plath underlined in her copy of Virginia Woolf's The Waves, and that Stephanie Brooks later appropriated for a text-based artwork. These multiple layers of mediation are integral to all of the included works. The exhibition features 34 works by 21 artists inspired by writers Octavia Butler, A. S. Byatt, María Elena Cruz Varela, Emily Dickinson, Zora Neale Hurston, Clarice Lispector, Gabriela Mistral, Toni Morrison, Alejandra Pizarnik, Mary Shelley, Rebecca Solnit, Gertrude Stein, Sylvia Plath, Mary Wollstonecraft, and Virginia Woolf.

As a tribute to Woolf's foundational essay A Room of One's Own, all the artists selected for Strange Oscillations and Vibrations of Sympathy are female in order to focus the interpretation of literature through the lenses of subsequent generations of artists. The works in the exhibition demonstrate the political and creative progress of feminism, examine writers' intellectual pursuits, navigate their status as literary icons, and interpret their legacies. They also engender an intimate and sustained contemplation of texts—a cerebral, analytical pursuit whose future is threatened by a culture that favors sound bites, hashtags, and 140-character tweets.

A catalogue is forthcoming in 2017 featuring texts by exhibition curator Kendra Paitz, art historian Melissa Johnson, poet/artist Cecilia Vicuña, and artists Xaviera Simmons, Kay Rosen, Deborah Willis, and Marcelline Delbecq.