TThe artist Carolee Schneemann died at the age of 79. Last summer she was one of the most intriguing interviewees Rebel Women: The Great Art Fightback, a wonderful BBC4 documentary on the emergence of feminist artistic performance in the years 60 and 70. That documentary is exactly my idea of a great night in, and it was the first time I saw many amazing revolutionary artists talking, from Suzanne Lacy to Judy Chicago.
Although their work was extraordinarily different, the stories they told were pitifully similar. They were mocked and shattered, and it took decades for most of these pioneers to find even a minimum of recognition in the mainstream art world. Speaking of her Internal scrolling, since 1975, who saw her extract a long flow of paper from her vagina and read its contents, Schneemann said dryly that "it probably cost her a lot of good teaching."
Last week it was written and remembered in reverent and respectful tones, and time has finally given it the place it deserves in the history of art. I never knew Schneemann during art lessons at school, of course – on his website, in 1964 Joy of meat It is said to have "the character of an erotic rite: excessive, indulgent, a celebration of meat as material: raw fish, chickens, sausages, wet paint, transparent plastic, rope brushes, scrap of paper"; in 1965 Fuses, made a film of herself having sex with her partner then, to represent the "energies of the body" – even though I remember trying to copy Mondrian using colored pencils.
Instead, I learned to know her through a song, Hot Topic, by the band Le Tigre. It seemed appropriate to remember him during the International Women's Day, because Hot Topic should be his anthem; the song is a joyful celebration of (especially) women, artists, writers, musicians, activists and directors, from Gertrude Stein to Angela Davis to Billie Jean King. And it was my introduction to many of these people, the first time I heard about them, the spark that made me want to find out who Schneemann was.
Becoming a teenager before the Internet had really spread meant that many of my cultural references came from music. The Holy Bible from Manic Street Preachers essentially gave me my list of readings for guys. With a band like The 1975, from the name of a Kerouac inscription, that tradition continues. It leads to curiosity and discovery, and if it leads fans along the streets to open their eyes as if to discover Carolee Schneemann, these rolling educations continue for a long time.
Taylor Swift, a star who is not afraid to reveal her worst fears
Taylor Swift is on the cover of Elle magazine, and instead of doing an interview, wrote an essay: 30 things I learned before turning 30.
The main lesson I learned before I turned 30 is that wine is not a mixer, but Swift has a bigger fish to fry. In principle, I am wary of celebrities writing pieces about themselves, which seems to be a growing and regrettable trend; how much better is it to divert criticism or analysis or independent interpretations than to write the story yourself?
But being a hypocrite and a glutton for the punishment, I recovered. I can not do anything about it: I'm fascinated by Swift. Her 30 list is a curious reading, half open, half defensive, a controlled portrait of how Swift would like you to see her. He loves the recipes of Jamie Oliver and Nigella Lawson. She learned more about politics when she grew up and will be more and more involved in countering what defines the current "lousy rhetoric". He has some regrets about his ubiquitous team, and attributes his flashy gang-girl phase to not being as popular as a teenager, to which the most shrewd fans might respond, duh.
But it is the number seven lesson that goes well beyond the care of the image. "I bring a QuikClot military bandage dressing, which is for gunshot wounds or stab wounds," he wrote, admitting that after the attack on the Manchester Arena, mass shooting at a music festival in Las Vegas and the experiences with many stalkers, she fears for her fans & her safety. People find it hard to arouse sympathy for celebrities, and I often wonder why. Money aside, for the most part it looks horrendous.
Rachel Shenton, opening books to all the children
World Book Day has an unusual effect on me. I'm generally resistant to organized fun, but I like it a lot. It transforms me from a social media descent into a temporary aunt happy, radiant in the direction of the children of all those I know, cooing on the costumes that people have put together for their children to bring to school. I go around doing an atypical race: Matilda! Hermione! The cook from Alice in Wonderlandwhich, according to my nephew, certainly counts!
Rachel Shenton, who won an Oscar for her short film, The Silent Child, used the day as an opportunity to invite authors to include more children with disabilities in their stories. The Silent Child he talks about a six-year-old deaf called Libby; Shenton said that her experience in making them taught her how important it is that "children see each other in the programs and movies they watch and in the books they read … Never see yourself can be so demoralizing and make their experiences they seem invisible ".
It seems so obvious, but we can not say enough: representation is important. Finding characters that are like them causes adults to feel less alone. How powerful it must be for children.