Critical Trilogy

a critic's millennial journey

MIDTOWN DIALECTIC: BETWEEN HEAVEN & EARTH

Suzanne Benton performing her Mask Tale Performance of "Ariadne" at the opening of "Woman in the 21st Century: Margaret Fuller and the Sacred Marriage"

The multimedia movement that HP Garcia envisioned in 2004 when he moved his operations to midtown took

Eighth Avenue at 38th Street

hold on August 4 with the opening of  Woman in the 21st Century: Margaret Fuller and the Sacred Marriage.  This too, is how I found him, by following in Margaret’s footsteps from the discovery of the sacred marriage icon in the grassroots — to interpreting it in the urban environment.

Eighth Avenue through my car window

The last thing HP Garcia says to me from the door is “Watch out.  This neighborhood is dangerous.”

Just the place for a cutting edge movement.

The still scary neighborhood from my car window with its chaos on the Sunday before the opening.

Woman in the 21st Century:

Margaret Fuller and the Sacred Marriage

What does the female prototype of the 21st century look like?  What are her characteristics?  How will we recognize her presence in our lives?

These are the questions I was asking myself when I undertook the challenge of writing Woman in the 21st Century in 1997.  Like most people, I never heard of Margaret Fuller.  But I was driven to write a book about the challenges facing the 21st century woman, and how the shifting gender archetypes would help her meet it.

Jessa Piaia as Margaret Fuller with the frontispiece of "Woman in the Nineteenth Century" on Fuller's 199th birthday at the First Parrish Church in Cambridge.

I didn’t realize at the time how closely I was following in Fuller’s footsteps in her transition from author to critic.  My manuscript served as a form of “Philosopher’s Stone” in my search for the icon that Margaret Fuller had written about in her book.  She gave this archetype a form on the frontispiece: a hexagram surrounded by an Ouroboros.

After being confronted with this symbol for the first time during Margaret Fuller’s 199th birthday in Cambridge, I decided to launch an exhibition with John Wronoski of the Pierre Menard Gallery.  When HP Garcia came to the opening, he invited me to bring the exhibition to his gallery in New York.

What does the female prototype of the 21st century look like?  What are her characteristics?  How will we recognize her presence in our lives?

Like the self-devouring Ouroboros, I come full circle back to these questions with this current evolution of Woman in the 21st Century: Margaret Fuller and the Sacred Marriage. I feel that we are coming closer to answering them; let me know if you agree.

Lisa Paul Streitfeld

Curator

August 4, 201o

Guardians: Richard Humann (left) and John Wronoski (right) at the hanging of "Woman in the 21st Century: Margaret Fuller and the Sacred Marriage"


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August 6, 2010 - Posted by | Uncategorized

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