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Lisa Alvarado's New Installation

From my friend Lisa Alvarado, the following bit of news. Congratulations Lisa!!

Lisa Alvarado's Mexican Woman's Toolkit, Sin Fronteras is a large floral
tote bag hanging on wooden pegs, which visitors are invited to rummage
through. The bag belongs to a Mexican domestic in WWII-era Chicago: her
life is service to others, she has no privacy.

Reimagining The Distaff Toolkit

"Reimagining the Distaff Toolkit" is an exhibition of contemporary art,
each of which has, at its visible core, a tool that was important for
women's domestic labor in the past (the 18th century through World War
II). The old tool becomes the fulcrum for a work of art. Each work and the
exhibit as a whole have the power to speak to viewers independently,
Artists are placing objects such as a dressmaker’s figure, diapers,
graters, grinders, needles, pins, pots, pans, baskets,
garden-seed-packets, rakes, hoes, dress patterns, dish-rags, rolling pins,
brooms, buckets, darning eggs, knives, rug-beaters, and other tools at the
center of their work. One piece will have an early 19th century distaff at
its visible core. Part of the point of this exhibition project is to
explore the idea of "seeing as context." As I imagine the process here, I
look at a tool that facilitated very hard and repetitive labor and that
evokes women's degradation as domestic drudges. I look again, through my
early 21st century eyes, at a moment when "old tools" have become
commodified and expensive, and I see costly beauty. Reimagining the
distaff toolkit for the purposes of this exhibition might include
(overlapping) gestures in any of the following directions – or other
directions – history / memory / gender / labor / material culture /
household objects / family relations / power and powerlessness / drudgery
/ craft and beauty. Reimagining the Distaff Toolkit puts utility in
conversation with art, the past in conversation with the present.

March-May 2008 Bennington (VT) Museum
Oct-Dec 2008 The Mead Museum, Amherst College
Jan-Feb 2009 Morris Museum, Morristown, NJ
March 2009 Oklahoma State University
Sept-Dec Union College, Schnectady, NY

Lisa Alvarado, poet, novelist, literary critic

This post first appeared on AmoXcalli, please read the originial post: here

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Lisa Alvarado's New Installation


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