Lavoir

This lavoir, in the French village of St. Mars-du-Desert,  Mayenne, is typical of the locales where women would hand wash the laundry in the stream. I made three works for it: Laundry Days, Risen from the Foam, and Labour. Serendipitously, I found two vintage gowns in an antique shop nearby with the anagram LB, so I was more inspired by Louise Bourgeois than usual (she is probably my largest source of inspiration). Laundry Days has a nursery rhyme about how only less reputable women wash on a Saturday. Virtuous women wash on a Monday and it goes downhill from there. The title, Risen from the Foam, alludes to Aphrodite's birth from sea foam. In this case, the launderer rises from laundry soap bubbles, releasing herself from the arduous tasks historically assigned to her gender. And the third piece, Labour, depicts a fetus in the uterus based on a wax model I saw at the Musée Flaubert in Rouen. 

 

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