The Woman as a Consumption Object: varnishing Andreea Cioran

  • femeia obiectTuesday, the 26th of June, starting at 19:00, Aiurart is presenting Andreea Cioran’s first personal photography exhibition, titled “The Woman as a Consumption Object”.  This exhibition comprises of a set of ten photographic artworks put up on picture rails that are playing on permutations and references made to a host of artists – from Renoir to Modigliani or Kupka – and their iconic representations of the fair gender.

    The exhibition can be visited daily, between 15:00-19:00, until the 10th of July (entry is free).

    “Following their accession to a wide range of rights women were now being shackled aesthetically and pressurised into making themselves look a far cry from most women’s real anatomy. Though capitalism is underwriting these freedoms for women, it is also enslaving them by having them subjected to an ever-so-difficult to attain standard of physical beauty. Concurrently, women are willingly reshaping their natural bodies in a forlorn quest to achieve that supposedly ideal standard even if it entails risking their health and well-being, or even risking their lives in the process.

    Yet, they are patently disregarding the fact that the anonymous sex-symbol end product on show, whose photoshopped image has been digitally enhanced and air-brushed beyond what the best makeup artists can ever hope to achieve is all about creating a marketable illusion that sells things. “I am an optical illusion”, top model Clothilde once said. “I wish I looked like Cindy Crawford”, top model Crawford concurred.

    This problem is hardly a contemporary one for this age-old matter can be traced throughout the history of art. Over time, some of its aspects may have changed as they drew on the social context available at the time though its essence remained the same: women having been pushed from an early age – and for a host of reasons, pertaining to the mores of the particular age they belonged to – to pay utmost attention to their physical aspects since their meaning in life has always been one where they had to please men, to whom they were meant to be subordinate.

    Accordingly, women are trained to become subconsciously depersonalised whilst considering themselves merely as an aesthetic object fulfilling various functions, mainly decorative and consumer-related. Most of us women are fooled to be letting ourselves trapped into a dehumanised state, reducing us to the zero-sum of our anatomic parts.

    Yet, should any woman use every available trick, the feminine beauty ideal that she wishes to embody is readily available. Though she may borrow the perfect body for this day and age, the image that she is able to project is but a compilation of falsehoods that bears little resemblance to the real her.

    Arguably, there is a real human being behind the image projected yet, this very image is buried underneath layers of manifold manipulations, hiding all the defects and qualities any one person may have for the sake of projecting a myth of feminine beauty, a well-nigh perfect creature that cannot simply exist in real life. This transformation ultimately resembles an assembly line of similar body parts belonging to different bodies, ‘cleansed’ of all personality traces to the point where they become interchangeable and, as with the pieces of a Lego puzzle, ever able to be recomposed into the latest ideal of perfection model.

    Andreea Cioran

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