I wanted to do a post on Louise Bourgeois, as she died on Monday and I admire her tremendously. But I found myself merely perpetuating the myth and you can get all that in the newspapers and all over the internet. You tube has some videos of her talking about her work but they're all really short so you have to piece all the snippets together.
The thing I really admired about her was that she just kept doing what she did, she made no concessions to trends, she had something to say and was content to keep saying it until someone listened. She didn't shout, she didn't alter her voice, she didn't try and fit in with the big boys. Her work was all about the emotions, even when reason was considered the only mental state worth a damn, and thus she opened the door into the art world for those of us who believe, as David Hume once said: 'reason is, and should remain, a slave to the passions.'
This is one of my favourite pieces of hers, it's called (if I've got it right) The Arc of Hysteria
on one of the many video clips I've watched about her over the last couple of days I heard someone ask: 'why does she always hang men by the genital area?' I wonder if the answer is: 'so someone would ask that question.' The human form has been carved out of marble and cast in bronze since it's been possible to do so. Bourgeois is one of the few artists I've come across who doesn't just put her sculptures on a plinth. I like that. I also like that the bronze is polished. These differences of presentation add new meaning to old content.
Apparently she held a 'salon' every Sunday to which anyone was welcome, all you had to do was phone and let her know you'd be attending, that would have been worth moving to New York for.