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Um menningargengi, kynjaða orðræðu og sanna íslenska myndlist (1916-1930)

Höfundur:
Birtist í
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Ártal:
2022
Bls:
82-115
DOI:
Þrátt fyrir að kosningaréttur og kjörgengi væru mikilvægir áfangar í réttindabaráttu kvenna árið 1915, þýddi það ekki sjálfkrafa að þær hlytu það sem kalla mætti menningargengi sem sjálfsögð borgaraleg réttindi. Í þessari grein verður hugtakið kynnt og með því að beita femínískri aðferðafræði til að greina kynjaða orðræðu um myndlist færð rök fyrir kynbundinni mismunun á menningargengi. Á því tímabili sem hér um ræðir, frá 1916 til 1930, stigu fram fyrstu þrjár íslensku myndlistarkonurnar sem höfðu útskrifast frá Listaháskólanum í Kaupmannahöfn og unnu alla ævi að eigin listsköpun: þær Kristín Jónsdóttir, Júlíana Sveins dóttir og Nína Sæmundsson. Áhersla er lögð á viðtökusögu á verkum myndlistarkvenna í samanburði við verk starfsbræðra þeirra, sem segja má að hefjist á þessu tímabili, og þá ólíku (og jafnvel andstæðu) mynd sem dregin var upp af þeim til ársins 1930, sem vísar til viss hápunkts í orðræðu um hið kvenlæga og karllæga í íslenskri myndlist.
Although achieving the right to vote and the right to candidacy in 1915 marked an important milestone in the struggle for women’s rights in Iceland, this did not automatically mean that women had the self-evident civil right of what could be called cultural eligibility. This argument will be made through an analysis of the gendered discourse on visual art in 1916 to 1930, employing a feminist methodology. Cultural eligibility is conceived as a civil right that ensures contributions to art and culture by practitioners in the field are not subject to discrimination, e.g., with respect to gender. One can use the concept to investigate whether the contribution of women is conditioned by gender and thus lies outside the definition in public discourse of what can be considered to have cultural, artistic value, and thereby have a formative effect on public opinion and national cultural consciousness. Also woven into this study are the discourse on the status of women in Iceland, the broader history of the Icelandic nation-state, the struggle for independence and the formation of a national identity. The article is divided into two parts: first, it surveys key studies by various international feminist art historians and other scholars on the status of women in the arts, gender, and gendered discourse, as well as by Icelandic historians who have used feminist theory and the concept of gender to analyse women’s position. It then demonstrates how a similar approach can be used to deconstruct public discourse on art, applying it to a defined period. An emphasis is placed on the historical reception of work by several artists (Kristín Jónsdóttir, Júlíana Sveinsdóttir and Nína Sæmundsson) in comparison with the reception of work by their male counterparts and the different (opposite) picture that emerges. The article argues that women artists did not enjoy cultural eligibility in Iceland, and it furthermore raises the question as to whether they received more validation and recognition as artists abroad, away from the gendered and nationalist discourse on art in their home country. Furthermore, the study draws attention to how women responded and put their best foot forward to fight for cultural eligibility.