Sunday, October 18, 2009

Nancy Spero 1926 -2009

Feminist art pioneer Nancy Spero passed away at NYU Hospital yesterday according to friends of the family. Having only met Nancy once (when she received the Visual AIDS Vanguard Award in 2007), she was always a more of a legend in my mind than personal acquaintance, and so I'll leave the proper eulogies to those who knew her better and simply note that just the other day in conversation, discussing who should represent the US at the next Venice Biennial, she was the only artist we could agree on.

My thoughts go out to her family and friends.

Image above: from Art:21

UPDATE: Art:21's Marc Mayer and Tyler Green both offer wonderful tributes to Nancy.

UPDATE 2: Holland Cotter's beautiful retelling of Nancy's life and contributions.

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6 Comments:

Anonymous C said...

A very good, independent, prescient artist whose work is not see or written about enough, the range of which I don't think is well understood; perhaps that will change now. Condolences to her family.

10/19/2009 12:24:00 PM  
Blogger Mark said...

Got to meet Nancy and Leon, I curated an exhibit and he was kind enough to take part. I visited their studio to look at possible work and they were both very kind, especially to artists I understand. Cookies, coffee and some art gossipy stuff, it was a real treat.

10/19/2009 12:52:00 PM  
Blogger donna said...

Although I know she had been in poor health for years, this feels like a great loss, and I send condolences to her friends and family as well.
Her work is deeply feminine, angry, beautiful, smart, unique and innovative. It's fun to watch that Art:21 video- since she suffered from arthritis for many years, she developed her own printmaking techniques and used her assistants to continue to make interesting work. Such a wonderful spirit- the photo really says it all.

10/19/2009 01:46:00 PM  
Blogger Donna Dodson said...

I saw a great film about Nancy Spero and Leon Golub- 'Golub/Spero' [videorecording] / Kartemquin Films, 2006. 1 videodisc (137 min.)

10/19/2009 03:15:00 PM  
Blogger Joanne Mattera said...

A recent film, Our City Dreams by Chiara Clemente features Nancy Spero. You can see how frail she is, but also how full of history she is--her own art history, feminist art history, art history in general. She's the oldest of five artists profiled, and to my mind she's as good a reason to eradicate ageism and sexism as any you can come up with.

Here's the link to my report on it, which contains links to the trailer and to the artists' work: http://joannemattera.blogspot.com/2009/02/five-artists-one-film-our-city-dreams.html

10/19/2009 03:22:00 PM  
Anonymous inchirieri apartamente cluj said...

I agree with C when he said about Nancy Spero that she was "A very good, independent, prescient artist whose work is not see or written about enough, the range of which I don't think is well understood".
Let's hope that she will be apreciated now after her death, because there are many cases when artists are apreciated after they're gone... and when they need the help to develop their work nobody wants to listen.

9/06/2010 03:26:00 AM  

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