Body and Feminism

The relationship between body and feminism in the '70s

Accademia nazionale di danza, Oggetto 5 (ottobre 1957 - gennaio 1958) by Lonzi CarlaLa Galleria Nazionale

The feminist movement in Italy was theorized by the art critic Carla Lonzi who in July 1970 wrote the Manifesto di Rivolta Femminile (Female Revolt Manifesto) together with Carla Accardi and Elvira Banotti. Other writings followed that marked the departure from patriarchal culture and studied the role of women in the world of art.

Corpo a corpo | Body To Body (catalogo)La Galleria Nazionale

Feminist artists of this period began to give voice and visibility to their condition as marginalised in the history of art through new means of expression (performance, dance, collage, photography and visual poetry).

Corpo a corpo | Body To Body (catalogo)La Galleria Nazionale

Over the past forty years, women have reclaimed the artistic field which, like many others, had hitherto been closed to them.

Feminism, therefore, both as a political movement and as an incubator of creativity has been and still is a fundamental engine that drives the evolution of female art.

In Italy in 1974 the art critic and feminist Lea Vergine published an essay entitled Body Art e storie simili. Il corpo come linguaggio (Body Art and similar stories. The body as language), noting how numerous authors, from the most diverse contexts, increasingly resorted to using the body as language.

Corpo a corpo | Body To Body (catalogo)La Galleria Nazionale

The '60s and '70s were years of awareness-raising and self-determination marked by the experimental research that variously represented the feminist issues, such as those of artists like Marina Abramović, Tomaso Binga, Ketty la Rocca, Gina Pane, Sanja Iveković, Suzanne Santoro and Francesca Woodman.

Corpo a corpo | Body To Body (catalogo)La Galleria Nazionale

The use of the body as a means of expression elevated art to a foundation of communication.

Corpo a corpo | Body To Body (catalogo)La Galleria Nazionale

The body became the physical agent of the structures of everyday experience, the sender and recipient of cultural messages, the place par excellence for transgression of social obligations.

Credits: Story

Written by Teresa Pauletti and Adele Nicolais.

Credits: All media
The story featured may in some cases have been created by an independent third party and may not always represent the views of the institutions, listed below, who have supplied the content.
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