Faces of Renowned Women to be Exhibited
at Smith College Library
Editor's note: For a high-res image of one
of Stein's portraits, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
NORTHAMPTON -- The faces of some of the
most influential American women in the past 35 years are
the subjects of a revealing exhibition at Morgan Gallery in Neilson Library,
Depictions of Gloria Steinem, Margaret Sanger, Bella Abzug, Flo Kennedy,
and Billie Jean King are among the portraits in "The Face: An Obsession
(Three Decades)," an exhibition of works by New York artist and
feminist Linda Stein.
The exhibition, which will be on display from Feb. 28 through March
30 in commemoration of Women's History Month, is sponsored and curated
by the college's Sophia Smith Collection.
Stein, a prominent and sometimes radical activist in the women's movement
and other political causes in New York since the 1970s, has published
and spoken extensively about art and feminism, as well as many other
topics. She has agreed to donate her diaries and sketchbooks to the Sophia
Smith Collection's permanent holdings.
Stein's "mood portraits," as she refers to the works in "The
Face," are a colorful collection of watercolor reflections that
alter the appearances of her famous subjects by casting them using a
range of lively color, shape and background combinations.
Her work "Gloria 449," for example, is an effective depiction
of Steinem that captures the renowned feminist's public evolution with
juxtapositions of pattern and color. "Bella 408" offers whimsical
reflections of a smiling Abzug in a three-dimensional format.
Stein was first attracted to the face as an art motif in the 1970s.
One of her first portraits, which will be included in the Smith exhibit,
is of Virginia Woolf. "I became completely focused on the face,
and insatiable," she said recently. "I became a face addict.
For me, the pencil line of the nose slowly making the turn from its vertical
descent to horizontal arc, has been grippingly sensual. An active feminist,
I enjoy making portraits of internationally beloved women."
For more information on Stein, consult http://www.lindastein.com.
The Morgan Gallery, named for Constance Morrow Morgan, a 1935 Smith
graduate, is located in the entrance corridor of Neilson Library. For
library hours, consult http://www.smith.edu/libraries/info/hours/.
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