Young artists have no sense of history. Something else is happening right now with younger artists and their sense of history. It’s as if what preceded them is of no value or never really happened. I’m always amazed when I talk to women artists in college who have no interest in feminist art. There seems to be this frightening, alarming return to the modernist notion of the self-contained, genius originator. Young artists in particular don’t want to acknowledge antecedents. I’m not really interested in recuperating history and I’m certainly not interested in romantic nostalgia for the past, but I’m very aware of the history of art that preceded me. Every artist works through history. I mean, painters are always painting against the history of painting.
Jacques Emile Blanche (1861-1942)
Bildnis eines liegenden
Exactly why do we want to be smaller? What exactly is the appeal of being smaller? How does it benefit us? Does it make us better mothers? Better students? Better lovers? Better artists? Scientists? Friends? Does it make us more badass badasses?
No, no, no, no, no. You must see that it doesn’t. It doesn’t do anything but make us smaller.
Babies and puppies are small. So are dimes and Skittles. You’re a fucking woman. A woman! You are entitled to occupy as much fucking space as you like with your awesomeness, and you better be suspicious as fuck of anybody who tells you differently.
Why, ladies? Why must we continue to whittle ourselves down? Who is it for? What is it for? You can walk through a certain aisle at the pharmacy or at the grocery store and see the language of diminishment all over the packaging for weight loss aids of all kinds. “Shrink your waist.” “Lose inches off your thighs.” “Slim down.” “Get skinny.”
How about “Grow your mind.” “Increase your confidence and productivity.” “Beef up your knowledge.” “Enlarge your scope of asskicking.”
That’s a valid message for women and girls: grow, expand, branch out, open up, get bigger, wider, faster, stronger, better, smarter. Go up not down. Get strong, not skinny.
You are not here to get smaller. You are not here to have a thin waist and thighs. You are not here to disappear. You’re here to change the world! Change the fucking world, then! Forget about “losing a few pounds.” Think about what you could be gaining instead.