Spoken Word Performance at Amos Eno Gallery

Rosemary Meza-DesPlas, also a spoken word performer, will present her piece titled Intervals of Anger at the opening reception on February 1st. She will perform a poem every fifteen minutes in conjunction with an artwork in the exhibition.

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“Jane Anger” opens at Amos Eno Gallery

“Jane Anger” will open at Amos Eno Gallery on Friday, February 1st with a reception from 7:00-9:00pm.

Amos Eno Gallery is pleased to present Jane Anger, an exhibition of new works by Rosemary Meza-DesPlas. Jane Anger features hand-sewn human hair drawings, watercolors and onsite installations. Rosemary Meza-DesPlas’ figurative artworks emphasize line and movement. The title refers to a 16th century pamphlet published in England titled Jane Anger, Her Protection for Women. An opening reception will be held on Friday, February 1 from 7-9 PM at the gallery’s location at 56 Bogart Street in Brooklyn, NY.

Meza-DesPlas, also a spoken word performer, will present her piece titled Intervals of Anger at the opening reception. She will perform a poem every fifteen minutes in conjunction with an artwork in the exhibition.

Meza-DesPlas explores the concept of anger as a tool for change by juxtaposing found imagery from social media, art history and mass media. She is interested in how the social movements, Women’s Marches and #MeToo, harnessed anger in order to forefront an array of gender-based burdens.

This exhibition includes Meza-DesPlas’ most recent drawings which incorporate her gray hair. She has been sewing with her own hair since 2000. Her hair is hand-sewn into a variety of grounds with small embroidery needles. Meza-DesPlas’ decision to collect, sort and utilize hair as a vehicle for art-making is informed by socio-cultural symbolism, feminism and body issues, and religious symbolism. Hair embodies a dichotomy: it can be sexy and engaging to people, on the other hand, it can be repulsive – like a hair in your soup or a hair on your hotel pillow. There are religious connotations to hair which coincide with symbolism reflecting strength, sensuality and reverence; such as Delila cutting off Samson’s hair and Mary Magdalen washing the feet of Jesus with her hair.

Rosemary Meza-DesPlas received a MFA in Painting from Maryland Institute, College of Art (Hoffberger School of Painting) and a BFA from The University of North Texas. An article on her hand-sewn human hair drawings was featured in the Huffington Post Arts & Culture section in 2015. Ms. Meza-DesPlas parallels the themes in her artwork with the written word and spoken word performances. In 2018, she presented the academic paper “Reclaiming the Tool of Anger: Year of the Angry Women” at the 9th International Conference of the Image in Hong Kong SAR. Ms. Meza-DesPlas’ recent spoken word performances were at the Feminist Art Conference, Ontario College of Art & Design, Toronto, Canada; Center for Contemporary Arts, Santa Fe, NM; ARC Gallery in Chicago, IL and the Durango Arts Center in Durango, CO. Ms. Meza-DesPlas currently lives and works in Farmington, New Mexico.

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Personages#1-#5

Seeing in the age of big data. What information is left out? Artworks are 8 inches diameter. Hand-sewn human hair on fabric, mounted on stretched circle canvas. Hanging hardware on back.

Betty FriedanLucy StoneKate ChopinElizabeth Cady StantonAlice Paul

nevertheless: She Persisted @ Durango Arts Center

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“No country can ever truly flourish if it stifles the potential of its women and  deprives itself of the contributions of half of its citizens” First Lady Michelle  Obama.

The title of this exhibition “nevertheless: She Persisted” refers to a phrase by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. In defense of silencing Senator Elizabeth Warren, McConnell said, ““Sen. Warren was giving a lengthy speech. She had appeared to violate the rule. She was warned. She was given an explanation. Nevertheless, she persisted.” Subsequently, the phrase was embraced on social media and became a battle cry for women across the U.S. in 2017. Women did not want to be told — to sit down and stop talking.

The works in this exhibition are grouped into categories to reflect gender-based burdens. These are hardships disproportionately shouldered by women in society. These gender-based burdens include gender-based violence, political inequality and gender-based-poverty. This weight hauled by women can have a palpable physical existence or take on a psychological shape of enormous proportions. Many women live day-to-day hindered by gender-based burdens; yet, they continue to persist.

The goal of “nevertheless: She Persisted” is to raise awareness of gender-based burdens. By fore-fronting gender-based burdens, inequities surrounding violence, poverty and politics and their impact on women can continue to be highlighted and discussed. Ongoing visibility of these issues is a necessity in order for change to occur – whether it manifests in small steps or larger advancements.

Venice – The Image Conference

I attended the 8th Annual International Conference on The Image in Venice, Italy from October 31-November 1, 2017. I presented a paper titled “Heaviness, Hardship, Heft: Gender-based Burdens in Images”. I also participated in the Pop-up Exhibition at Venice International University. Here are some images from my experience in Venice at the conference.

My artwork at the Pop-up Exhibition at Venice International University

ES1, Hand-sewn Human Hair, thread and watercolor accents on Canvas

Beginning of my talk “Heaviness, Hardship, Heft: Gender-based Burdens in Images”
Discussion on Gender-based violence
Discussion on Gender-based violence.
Slide from my talk “Heaviness, Hardship, Heft: Gender-based Burdens in Images”.

Heaviness, Hardship, Heft @ ARC Gallery An Exhibition of Artworks by Rosemary Meza-DesPlas

ARC Gallery

2156 N. Damen Ave., Chicago, IL 60647

773-252-2232, www.arcgallery.org

info@arcgallery.org

                        Rosemary Meza-DesPlas * Heaviness, Hardship, Heft

                         Opening: Friday, September 1, 6:00-9:00pm

Spoken Word Performance: 7:15pm

Exhibition Dates: Wednesday, August 30 – September 23, 2017

            Gallery Hours: Thursday – Saturday: 12 – 6 pm; Sunday: 12 – 4 pm

ARC Gallery presents Heaviness, Hardship, Heft, an exhibition of works by Rosemary Meza-DesPlas.

Rosemary Meza-DesPlas presents a series of artworks reflecting gender-based burdens. Weight hauled by women can have a palpable physical existence or take on a psychological shape of enormous proportions. Fluctuating states of poverty, violence and politics encumber women on a daily basis. Feminine onus is heightened by entrenched patriarchal institutions and reaches a crest during political unrest and instability.

Rosemary Meza-DesPlas is a Latina visual artist, writer and spoken word performer. She has exhibited at the Koehnline Museum of Art, Art Museum of Southwest Texas and the New Mexico Museum of Art. Ms. Meza-DesPlas has exhibited internationally at Hoxton Arches Gallery in London, Yorck Studios in Berlin and LuXun Academy of Fine Art Gallery in Shenyang, China. In 2017, she presented spoken word performances at the Center for Contemporary Arts in Santa Fe, NM and at the Ontario College of Art & Design in Toronto, Canada. She is a featured artist in Of Note Magazine (where art meets activism), The Gun Issue, Summer 2017. In October 2017, Ms. Meza-DesPlas will be presenting an academic paper titled Heaviness, Hardship, Heft: Gender-based Burdens in Images at the Eighth International Conference on the Image, Venice International University, Venice, Italy.

ARC Gallery and Educational Foundation is a not-for-profit gallery and foundation whose mission is to bring innovative, experimental visual art to a wide range of viewers and to provide an atmosphere for the continued development of artistic potential, experimentation and dialogue. ARC serves to educate the public on various community-based issues by presenting exhibits, workshops, discussion groups, and programs for, and by, underserved populations.

ARC Gallery and Educational Foundation is sponsored in part by grants from the Illinois Arts Council, City Arts, the Department of Cultural Affairs, the Chicago Community Foundation, the Gaylord and Dorothy Donnelley Foundation, the Ravenswood Bank, the Wicker Park Bucktown Chamber of Commerce, our members and ARC angels.

ARC Gallery is an internationally recognized exhibition space that has been an integral part of the Chicago art scene since its inception in 1973. Founded during the women’s movement as an alternative to the mainstream gallery system, ARC is one of the oldest co-ops of its kind in the country. As a non-profit, woman artist-run cooperative, ARC continues its feminist tradition by providing exhibition opportunities for professional and emerging artists working in all media based on excellence of artwork, without discrimination toward gender, race, age, class, physical/mental ability, sexual, spiritual or political orientation.

 

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