© Laurel Smith



As feminist I’m concerned primarily with woman as a theme, or the showing of the ways women are discriminated against in this patriarchal society. Menstruation is a stigmatic condition (Ingrid Johnston-Robledo | Joan C. Crisler). Women are regarded as of lesser value, as the other (Simone de Beauvoir). I’m concerned with showing this mechanism and at the same time with undermining it. By using menstrual blood in my informel and monochrome work, I draw attention to the negative taboo and publicly show something that is usually kept secret – everything is done to make the time of menstruation as invisible as possible. Cleanliness and discretion are foremost. The leaking women were seen as unclean, and the unpure blood contrasted with the masculine, healing blood of Christ. So I called a series of menstruation pictures ”That’s the blood I’ve spilled for you”, the other simply “Menstruarte”. “Hidden Abject” shows blood through a small cut in the canvas. I try through the completed abstract structure of the menstrual blood to make the viewer aware of the theme, and second, I use the aesthetic work to reverse the negative value. Menstrual blood is abject: “Not me. Not that. But not nothing, either” (Julia Kristeva). In ”Bleeding” the abject is shown as an object, because I did not use menstrual blood, it is a painted photograph.


Photo Credit: © Petra Paul

Petra Paul is located at 48.20843° N, 16.37782° E.  Visit http://www.petrapaul.beep.de




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