Tryna be really happy w/o being really stupid.
Pain-self-disgust-angst-depression-wallowing-despair-exhaustion-fragile-doubting-longing-deep-sobbing-tears-crushing-fear-hot-shame-confusion-uncertainty-bewilderment. Seek shelter in your bedroom, preferably in your bed. Rest there, sleep there, relax, retreat, reflect. Lie restlessly. Safely. Mull over your actions and those of the people around you. A private space to curate your belongings and your personality. Feel, and through these feelings develop your strengths and self reliance. Learn from your feelings, study them, critique them, share them. Don’t feel that your feelings need to be confined to the bedroom. Is it related to being sent to your room as a child, when your emotions got too much for others to deal with, too much for you to deal with around other people? I always feel that childhood must have been the most emotionally confusing time, I’ve watched it in the temper of children I have babysat, especially before they fully grasp how to speak or to tell you what they need/want. And I’ve felt it when I’ve watched Where The Wild things Are and Inside Out, both had me heaving honest tears that I barely understand even now, how could they come from somewhere so deep? My mum says that after my dad moved country when I was 4/5 I had repeated temper tantrums and I do remember being firmly sent to sit on the stairs at after school creche while I threw a fit after someone used my new markers around that age. Or refusing to get out of bed for school in the morning and arriving late.
Give her a room of her own
Bedrooms and beds, from a female and girl perspective. It’s an interesting time for bedrooms given the amount of people online are socialising from their bedrooms. Selfies, vlogs, etc. The room, the person in the room, the laptop/phone/computer, the post, the viewer (perhaps they’re also in their bedroom). This intimacy is normal and emotional sharing has lost its taboo.
Molly Soda’s debut 2015 solo show (congrats girl) at Annka Kultys London gallery is literally called From My Bedroom TO Yours and the gallery text simply puts that Soda’s work ‘is about girls and for girls in their bedrooms’. I found this simple statement completely revelatory and uplifting, but subtle to the point that I’m not sure if everyone can see how radical it is. To allow this space to enter the white cube gallery space, where critical thought and conceptual ideas are hosted, and talked about, engaged with on a scholarly level. To say that those moments and young girls are deserving of this and allowed into that world. It’s subtly submersive, and very intuitive of Molly Soda, as is a lot of her work. Molly Soda and a whole crop of other young female’s are kind of creating this cool movement that allows girl culture to be legitimised and, without changing, girl culture begins to be positioned alongside other ‘worthy’ art subjects and topics.
Less exciting in the Soda gallery text was the immediately tired comparison to Tracy Emin’s My Bed from 1998. It is important to position work in art history to give context (that’s kind of exactly what I’m doing here) but this feels tired. Maybe it is particularly because Annka Kultys is a London gallery that they felt obliged to reference Emin? Both pieces come from very different perspective, cultural moments but in one specific way I guess they ARE similar in capturing the spirit of a shift taking place in the art world, in directing a focus to new young artists. I do obviously also want to talk about that piece, but I just want to let each piece speak for itself.
Tracy Emin was the pinnacle result of British lad culture and a certain crude bravado. Annoyingly she has always had to defend this great piece of art, people not give it enough respect. Why? I typed this quote out from an interview Emin gave “There’s many artists who have used the metaphor for a bed, or the symbol of a bed but they haven’t actually shown their bed… When you go to the [Edvard] Munch Museum in Norway you actually look at his bed and you think ‘aaaw he slept in there’ and it becomes important. It becomes probably more important than his work… It’s the real thing.” Emin also has her quilt series that are beautiful (I’m a fan of Emin). Warhol silver helium pillows – ‘Silver Clouds’ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SCWrc9ZUTC8 Quilts in general, southern craft artists https://youtu.be/GONwBVq19i4?t=1m39s Stream Made in Mississipi by Bill Ferris here and skip to 6:28 for Amanda and Mary Gordon talking about their quilts Sophie Calle 67 days to unhappiness Frida Khalo http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/3988552-frida-s-bed In fact, and I really like this, the really well known bed or bedroom pieces all seem to be made by females. With the exception of the two jerks who jumped on Tracy Emin’s bed in the Tate because they thought it would make the piece ‘better’. Classic dickhead male behaviour. But they’re more of a footnote to Emin’s work than recongnised/standing on their own merit. The bed as a public spectacle. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2729489/Chinese-female-artist-sleeps-naked-bed-iron-wire-36-days.html Back to refusing to get out of bed. Of feeling as though you can’t. Another young female artist I’m very interested in, Audrey Wollen, has a radical theory called Sad Girl Theory that flips this status from a submissive retreat into a formal protest or revolt. In an interview with Oyster magazine she states that “My first work with Sad Girl Theory was to explore how the women-in-bed, the archetypal art history nude, might be re-staged as an agent rather than an object.” And in a Teen Vogue profile she described how she “created Sad Girl Theory, which proposes that a girl’s sadness and resulting self-destruction can be understood as a form of political activism. Resistance or revolutions have always been defined in really masculine ways (violence, anger, riots and marches), and I’m trying to uncover the untold history of girls who used their own sorrow as a way to disrupt the status quo. Crying in public, staying in bed all day, hating your body have all been dismissed for girls as “personal problems” instead of political situations. But the fact is: it is very painful to be a girl in the world right now, and sadness is sometimes the only kind of agency available to us. Imagine if every girl in history that was dismissed as sad, crazy, or self destructive was reconsidered as a revolutionary leader!” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mRjjiOV003Q In From the Best to the Blonde, Marina Warner talks about ‘Ruelles’, an elaborate public/private bedroom where 17th century females received guests, they became a space for all the females to gather and define their social values (aka bitch and gossip), as highlighted in the scans below. http://www.loshadka.org/wp/?p=1441 http://noirlac.tumblr.com/ Old masters paintings, are these women in their own bedroom or the artist’s studio? http://the-toast.net/2014/10/20/women-trying-sleep-unsuccessfully-western-art-history/ Reclining female nude, Pevlican Bomb ‘visualising desire’ http://pelicanbomb.com/art-review/2015/images-universe-visualizing-desire http://arthistorygeeks.tumblr.com/post/118146354981/howpeoplelived-impressionism-women-at-rest Hannah Diamond https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mKztreA6e7Y LIZ Y2K https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N2haRSNr08M Also featured as OKGRL debut cover girls in their fictional second life ‘bedrooms’. Charli XCX
Music videos that use beds to invoke intimacy …
Gwen Stefani 4 in the morning
Rihanna California King Bed
Miley Cyrus Adore You
Classic bedroom dance movie scene
But what of actual bedrooms, not curated bedroom-esque spaces in galleries or music videos.
90s teen pop star music videos in bedrooms – Lucky, Iconic teen tv/movies bedrooms, clarissa, sabrina (70s episode), buffy, virgin suicides, 16 candles, pretty in pink, grease, ghost world, Sister Sister, My Mad Fat Diary, 10 things I hate a bout you, cher?, Roxy Carmichael, Cruel Intentions, Blossom, As told by ginger,Baby Sitters Club, I mean this one’s a little bit different because its clearly a set to frame Spears as a lolita sex object and not neccesarily actually a representation of her personality or a safe space for her but it still proves the point of framing and exposing a private part of someone’s life to create intimacy. I mean I might as well include it here (bear link). In ‘Sex and the City: Kiss and Tell’, the BTS book to the tv show, the SATC production designer, Jeremy Conway, has a nice quote about the reasoning and inspiration for each girl’s bedroom and overall apartment decor, ” Samantha’s colour scheme is like a big-game hunter, ochres and reds. Charlotte is kind of ivory tower, whites and very atonal. Miranda is like the colour of a bruise, with plums and greens. Carrie is a soft sea-foam teal colour, which works great for her skin tone and hair.” LOL [smiley face]. Anyway I may one day do a post dedicated to closets, wardrobes and dressing rooms.