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Title: A feminist dialogue with the camera : strategies of visibility in video art practices
Author: Long, Catherine
ISNI:       0000 0004 7226 294X
Awarding Body: University of the Arts London
Current Institution: University of the Arts London
Date of Award: 2016
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This is a practice–based PhD that seeks to contest limited and reductive tropes of female representation in a contemporary Western context. The focus of the thesis is on video art, which, I argue, can be both a radical tool for deconstructing dominant mainstream images of femininity and play a role in developing progressive re–presentations of female subjectivities. This thesis argues that there is a need to revisit feminist artworks from the 1970s and 1980s, the critical potential of which remains under–examined. Video as an artistic medium emerged during the late 1960s to 1980s over the same period that the women’s liberation movement gained momentum and achieved historic societal and legislative change in the West. Women artists used the medium of video as a means to contest the representational economy of traditional gender roles that placed a broad array of limitations upon women. The camera apparatus allowed women to control the production of their own image, articulate their subjective experiences and directly address the spectator. The re–imaging of female subjectivities progressed by feminist artists was, however, largely halted by the backlash against feminism in the 1990s. The issues raised by feminism, particularly in relation to female representation, therefore remain unresolved. This thesis argues that artistic strategies deployed by feminist artists in the 1970s and 1980s, underpinned by the radical principle ‘the personal is political’, which emerged in the 1970s, are still useful today. Through in depth analysis of selected video works from the 1970s onwards as well as reflection on my own art practice research, this thesis investigates how formal strategies employed by feminist artists can operate to undermine the status quo of hegemonic gender representations and to propose new potentialities of female subjectivities and gender identities.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: History of Art ; Fine Art