Girl Power (According to Kelly Reemtsen)

How do these images make you feel?

One thing I know for sure: Artist Kelly Reemtsen is trying to make you uncomfortable (and if I had to guess she’s accomplishing her goal).

You don’t have to be an art historian or enthusiast to understand what’s going on here. In a nutshell, the paradox is laid out for us colorfully: a deceptive illustration of women dressed in vintage dresses and handling large, gardening tools and equipment (although at first glance, the tools appear to be weapons of mass destruction).

At a time like this in our nation’s history, we’ve heard a lot of conversation about women’s rights. And in a manner to reflect on all of these words we’ve heard before the upcoming election, I find it comforting to turn to non-verbal opinions–art!

Lid Skidmore details Reemtsen’s paintings as “exploring the paradoxical state of being female in in post-feminist contemporary society.”

Of course our society has become more welcoming and accepting of these types of images, especially with the rise of single-parent homes, however, do women really get treated equally when it comes to their male counterparts? 

What I’m interested in exploring with you all is this: What do these images mean to you? Do these images reflect your own sense of womanhood? Why are these images ironic and is there any way we can change that going forward?

If you like these paintings as much as I do, I encourage you to view more of Kelly Reemtsen’s work on her website and/or at the Skidmore Gallery website.

Please feel free to respond to these questions above or make your own. I think there is no better time to discuss these issues now.

–Victoria Ford

(All digital photos of paintings are owned by Kelly Reemtsen)

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