Just Don't Call Me Venus! 20.06: 59 cms high: paperclay.
I wanted to make a statement about the naming of the female figures from 30,000 - 20,000 years ago frequently labelled 'primitive art' in art history books and invariably called 'venus' (e.g. Venus of Willendorf). While I have loved these figures for decades, I don't think I actually saw one, until the exhibition at the British Museum in 2013, Ice Age Art - The Arrival of the Modern Mind. The naming is that of 19th and 20th century archaeologists and art historians, at this time almost exclusively male, and positions the figures as sexualised objects for the male gaze. So, as a woman, what do I make of that? Here is one answer.