MUSEUM MMK FÜR MODERNE KUNST, Frankfurt am Main
Dong Jinling, Jana Euler, Anne Imhof, Oliver Laric, Liu Yefu, Ma Qiusha, Julia Phillips, Pamela Rosenkranz, Marianna Simnett, Raphaela Vogel, Wong Ping
by Susanne Pfeffer
Director, MUSEUM MMK FÜR MODERNE KUNST, Frankfurt am Main
Violence of a structural nature is no less brutal than its physical counterpart. The everyday presence of structural violence causes a mute paralysis. The definitions of gender based on symbolic, cultural, and physical boundaries are as hard and clear as they are painful to experience. Upbringing, cultural attribution, existing power structures, social codes, religious traditions, and biological manifestations unite to form a violent normative framework that governs body, sexuality, identity and behaviour.
“In view of the national-conservative and rightist discourses currently on the rise all over the world, gender is a domain all the more fiercely contested, a terrain on which freedom, plurality, and self-determination are at stake,” said Susanne Pfeffer.
The artists featured in the exhibition Performing Society: The Violence of Gender contest the symbolic castration of women and reclaim the abilities fundamentally denied them.
“They dissolve the framing of adolescents and overturn the rules controlling gesture, voice, deportment, and desire. In the process, they develop a counter-narrative to the institution of the family as the foundation of the heteronormative society. They show how mother's milk serves to delineate a territory in a realm between sexuality and reproduction, and they reveal the extent to which reproduction, technology, and exploitability are intertwined. The artworks uncover the violence that lies concealed in normative constructions of gender. With self-assurance, confidence, fantasy, humour, and pain, the artists transcend boundaries with their works and allow different images to emerge,” said Susanne Pfeffer.
Part of the exhibition is restricted to persons aged 18 and above only.