Judy Chicago’s PowerPlay: A Prediction

at Salon 94, NYC
Reviewed by Phoebe Hoban

Consistently miles ahead of the curve, the uber-feminist Judy Chicago has been so prescient that it has, at various key moments, worked against her. It sometimes seemed — and certainly must have felt — that despite presaging much of our current predicament, she was, unfortunately, pissing into the wind for entirely different reasons than the super-hero-sized malevolent male in her series, PowerPlay: A Prediction, shown at Salon 94. This evil-looking, nearly headless giant boasts a six-pack and a relatively small member, which he sprays like a brainless hose, heedlessly poisoning the hills and valleys of our planet. The painting, done in 1984, is called, appropriately enough, Pissing on Nature.

This and the three other wall-sized works on display, including an enormous triptych, look like they were done yesterday, but were in fact created in the mid-80s, making them, chronologically at least, relics of the past. Entering the gallery to encounter these massive canvases is like being unexpectedly sucker punched. Not only have these pieces not lost their relevance, they have now become far more relevant than they were when they were made…

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Judy Chicago, Driving the World to Destruction (1985)

To read the rest of Hoban’s review, go to Riot Material magazine: http://www.riotmaterial.com/judy-chicago-powerplay-prediction/

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