BIRTH, oil on canvas, 24″x24″, by JEANNE
Yesterday there was a “networking event’ at the School of Art and Art History at UIOWA, where I am currently attending classes. I chose not to attend because of an experience I’d had the evening before. I had attended a lecture by a talented and energetic woman who runs an art foundation that supports artists who have a vision for creating community through their art. I respected what this woman was doing and I don’t intend my remarks to disparage her personally. In fact I’m grateful that she helped clear up a problem that has been dogging my heels and interfering with my ability to set goals with respect to my art practice.
I had been fairly proactive about promoting my art and my vision, submitting artwork to various venues and even having a show at a local community center and a booth at the annual art’s festival here in town. But lately, I have been passing up opportunities that have arisen and not understanding why I seemed to be sabotaging myself. Partly, it was because I did decide to put my daily quota of creative energy into learning art in my classes, rather than creating items, like greeting cards, to sell at the farmer’s market. But, it was more than that, a kind of miasma had come over me, a reluctance to reach out and show my stuff in public.
What turned the light on for me was that the woman who came to speak about her foundation work used words like “sex positive”, “sex worker”, “deconstruction”, and “gender identity” when describing the projects she was involved with. It made me uncomfortable and it wasn’t until the next day that I understood why, and why I decided to skip the networking event.
I had joined a local arts cooperative when I first landed in this city because I was eager to learn as much as I could about the processes and materials involved in art-making. I know that we are killing the world with carbon and I wanted to make art about that and other human pain issues that seem to be being repressed and hidden by this culture. I hung in as long as I could, but eventually I was forced to confront gender fascism within the group and I had to separate myself from the group. On the positive side, I can say that this experience helped me confront the ugly truth about gender identity ideology and stop enabling this dysfunctional ideology.
But it turns out that the entire art world, art business, art community, has been infected by the virus of gender fascism and I will not be able to be a part of it unless I LIE ABOUT OBJECTIVE REALITY. Which I can’t do, because my art is based in facing the ugly truth about male superiority and gender fascism is just another patriarchal mindfuck. I know gender identity ideology is fascism because it’s about shutting women up and depriving them of access to resources.
I am being prevented from accessing resources and from benefiting from my labor because elderly women are invisible and have no status in this culture and because I refuse to go along with the mass delusion that prostitution is a free choice (and not the same old fucking female slavery as always) and that the sexes are interchangeable based on one’s whim; that people, other than the tiny minority with a chromosomal mutation that causes sterility, can be both sexes, or neither, on different days.
It is sobering to know that sexism and it’s adjunct, ageism, is alive and well in the art world and I am being oppressed by it and by the artsy people who believe they are social justice warriors. They regard me with contempt and believe they are morally superior to me and oh so woke.
As for me, it’s back to the drawing board, where I find my Source.