Women Up overturns the expression “woman up” and breaks apart the stereotype underlying the invitation to “act like a woman” by widening its perspectives.
Women Up is an action that gives a name to things, utilizes the founding power of language and reminds us that actions speak louder.
Women Up is a necessary and engaging obstacle race, whose projects, shows, voices, and data will emphasize the centrality of the female gaze and the National Gallery’s inquiry into feminism.
Women Up turns up the volume of the voices.
Sisters and Brothers!
Pump up the volume
We gonna yet ya!
Alcune interviste condotte in diversi quartieri di Roma sono state lo spunto per compiere un gesto semplice ma significativo nel museo.
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What we did
Under the direction of Cristiana Collu, the National Gallery has constantly dedicated attention to women and feminism, protagonists of exhibitions, special projects, and events. To mention but few: the shows Museum Beauty Contest (2016), Corpo a corpo | Body To Body (2017), and Le opere e gli archivi: Mara Coccia e Daniela Ferraria (2020); a call for mobilization against the decriminalization of domestic violence in Russia (2017), the Accademie della Maestria femminile (2018), the festival Women Out of Joint (2018), the acquisition of the Carla Lonzi Archive (2018), the calls After Hegel, who are we going to spit on? (2018) and Shut up. Or rather, speak (2020), inspired by Lonzi’s thought.
Where we are now: Numbers
In 2020, a research has revealed the presence of 251 women artists in the museum’s collections, 10% of the total, 517 artworks, and 26 countries of origin. Before 2014, 3 artworks by women artists were acquired per year, while from 2015 the number has risen to 16 per year, and in 2019 works by women artists constituted 30% of all acquisitions.
Since 2016 the average presence of women artist in our personal and collective shows is equal to 25%. Today, Time is Out of Joint includes 17 women artists, 10% of the total.
Where we are going
Interviews conducted in different neighborhoods of Rome inspired Made by a woman artist, the introduction of a simple but significant gesture in the museum: a label that highlights a characteristic of a work that is visible, although often overlooked. The immediacy of this action brings attention to the status of women in museums: active to define themselves through artworks, and not merely subjects for someone else’s gaze.
In October 2020 a significant number of works by women artists from the collections, restored for the occasion, will become part of Time is Out of Joint. The narrations of the show will be influenced by different works, voices and perspectives that will inspire new connections throughout the exhibition.
October is also the month of the show by the Spanish architect Izaskun Chinchilla. Elaborating on the armillary sphere, a medieval model of the universe, the show reflects on the philosophy and the politics of material spaces and investigates female architectural production from the intimate, to the public and social sphere.
In December 2020 the open call for audio contributions Now you can go will complete the “trilogy” dedicated to Carla Lonzi. The title recalls the recording of the dialogue between Lonzi and the artist Pietro Consagra, that represented the end of their relationship. Intertwining the legacy of Carla Lonzi and one’s own voice, the call wants to explore the intimate and powerful world of relationships.
In March 2021 the show Io dico Io – I say I will bring together over 40 Italian artists of different generations. The show originates from a necessity to take the floor and speak for oneself in order to assert one’s subjectivity, creating a single multitude of I. Conceived before the pandemic, the exhibition has been permeable to the times and to new suggestion from the artists and the open calls.
A section of the show will be dedicated to the Carla Lonzi Archive, currently being digitalized by Google Arts & Culture to make its internationally recognized material accessible online.