I knew nothing about “The Guerrilla Girls”. I did not know that the group was formed in 1985, nor did I know that the “Guerrilla Girls” art movement is still active today, so I definitely learned a lot from this art quiz question.
Here’s what I learned from Wikipedia:
Guerrilla Girls is an anonymous group of feminist, female artists devoted to fighting sexism and racism within the art world. The group formed in New York City in 1985 with the mission of bringing gender and racial inequality into focus within the greater arts community.
The group employs culture jamming in the form of posters, books, billboards, and public appearances to expose discrimination and corruption. To remain anonymous, members don gorilla masks and use pseudonyms that refer to deceased female artists. According to GG1, identities are concealed because issues matter more than individual identities, ‘Mainly, we wanted the focus to be on the issues, not on our personalities or our own work.’
You can learn more about today’s “Guerrilla Girls” at their official website: Guerrilla Girls. Here you’ll find information about the group, their activism, their calendar of events and exhibitions, as well as a link to an online store where you can purchase books, T-shirts, and other merchandise, all in support of their cause “to expose discrimination and corruption.”
You can also find their latest book, The Art of Behaving Badly, published in October 2020, at Amazon, as well as two earlier books.
Confessions of the Guerrilla Girls was published in 1995. “Fifty posters and a self-interview augment documentation of ten years of the hit-and-run feminist campaign against sexism, racism, and elitism in the art world and in our culture at large.”
And from 1998, you’ll find The Guerrilla Girls’ Bedside Companion to the History of Western Art. The promotional blurb is intriguing:
We were Guerillas before we were Gorillas. From the beginning, the press wanted publicity photos. We needed a disguise. No one remembers, for sure, how we got our fur, but one story is that at an early meeting, an original Girl, a bad speller, wrote ‘Gorilla’ instead of ‘Guerilla.’ It was an enlightening mistake. It gave us our mask-ulinity.
Ever wonder about the abundance of naked male statues in the Classical section of your favorite museum? Did you know medieval convents were hotbeds of female artistic expression? And how did those “bad boy” artists of the twentieth century make it even harder for a girl to get a break? Thanks to the Guerrilla Girls, those masked feminists whose mission it is to break the white male stronghold over the art world, art history-as we know it-is history. Taking you back through the ages, the Guerrilla Girls demonstrate how males (particularly white males) have dominated the art scene, and discouraged, belittled, or obscured women’s involvement. Their skeptical and hilarious interpretations of “popular” theory are augmented by the newest research and the expertise of prominent feminist art historians. “Believe-it-or-not” quotations from some of the “experts” are sprinkled throughout, as are the Guerrilla Girls’ signature masterpieces: reproductions of famous art works, slightly “altered” for historic accuracy and vindication. This colorful reinterpretation of classic and modern art, as outrageous as it is visually arresting, is a much-needed corrective to traditional art history, and an unabashed celebration of female artists.
Sounds like that could be a very interesting book!
I hope you enjoyed today’s “Art Quiz” feature. Maybe you already knew all about The Guerrilla Girls, or maybe, like me, you leaned something new. Either way, have a great weekend!