Urgent Museum Notice

WACK! Art and the Feminist Revolution

Two hard-edged octagons, each divided into eight pie-slice shapes painted red, pink, orange, yellow, olive green, blue, violet, or lavender, occupy a square, white background. Dark at the wide and narrow ends of each wedge, the hues create the illusion of 3-dimensional forms.
Sep 21 to Dec 16, 2007

WACK! Art and the Feminist Revolution is the first comprehensive exhibition to explore the formation, development, and impact of feminism in post-war contemporary art from 1965 to 1980 and will include artists from around the globe.

It is the largest exhibition in NMWA’s 20-year history and showcases nearly 300 works by 118 artists including painting, sculpture, photography, film, video, and performance art. The exhibition offers a major rethinking of feminist art, adds depth to the historical record, and creates interest in feminism as a vital force for a whole new generation.

WACK! Art and the Feminist Revolution’s story begins in 1965 with important proto-feminist work by Louise Bourgeois, Yayoi Kusama, Yoko Ono, Yvonne Rainer, and others who influenced the feminist art of the 1970s. It continues with iconic works by feminist artists such as Chantal Akerman, Eleanor Antin, Judith Baca, Judy Chicago, Ana Mendieta, Ulrike Ottinger, Howardena Pindell, Betye Saar, Miriam Schapiro, Nancy Spero, and Katharina Sieverding, among many others. The exhibition ends in 1980, with early work by artists such as Barbara Kruger, Cindy Sherman, and Lorraine O’Grady whose work was informed by the feminist practices of their foremothers.

Organized by the Los Angeles Museum of Contemporary Art (LAMoCA), NMWA is the second venue on a tour that also includes the Museum of Modern Art/PS1. A truly groundbreaking exhibition, WACK! Art and the Feminist Revolution will make clear that, in all its myriad forms, feminist art was a revolutionary force from 1965 to 1980 and continues to be relevant in contemporary art today.

Installation view of a large, textile sculpture hanging from the ceiling in a white gallery space. The textile piece is in a blood-red hue that contrasts with the white walls. The texture is rather rough. It looks like a giant heart hanging from three threads.

Installation view of Magdalena Abakanowicz Every Tangle of Thread and Rope

Exhibition Sponsors

The presentation of WACK! Art and the Feminist Revolution at the National Museum of Women in the Arts is generously provided by the Elizabeth A. Sackler Museum Educational Trust; MaryRoss Taylor and  Virginia B. Galtney; Fannie and Stephen Kahn Charitable Foundation; the Hugh M. Hefner Foundation; Dr. Arthur Bert and Mrs. Catherine Little Bert; Irene Natividad; Peggy Downes Baskin; and special friends of NMWA.