Griselda Pollock argues that the absence of women in the history of art is not the result of forgetfulness, negligence, or prejudice. It should be understood as the result of a systematic effort to perpetuate the ideological apparatus and the gender hierarchy in our society. As such, she suggests that instead of thinking in terms of a feminist art history, we should think about “feminist intervention” in art’s histories: both to change the present by means of how we re-present the past, and, in the same gesture, refuse to allow art historians to ignore living artists and thus, contribute to the struggles of today’s producers.
A key exponent of feminism in the disciplines of art history and cultural studies, and the author of more than twenty books, Griselda Pollock explores the complex relationship between gender, representation, and power, crossing them with feminist criticism (and practices), Marxism, psychoanalysis, and postcolonial theory.
In this podcast Griselda Pollock talks about her involvement in the Women’s Movement in England in the seventies, and about the points of convergence between feminism and art history. She gives a detailed analysis of the ideas set out in 'Old Mistresses: Women, Art and Ideology', a seminal text written with Rozsika Parker in 1981, in which they chart a new cultural imaginary based on works created by women artists throughout history. In her 1987 'Feminist Interventions in Art’s Histories', Pollock advocates the need to decentralise and diversify knowledge, and to design resistance strategies specific to each socio-political context. And, last but not least, drawing on her most recent essay 'Is Feminism a Bad Memory or a Virtual Future?', Griselda reflects on memory technologies, trauma, Oedipal and mother-child relationships, narratives of progress, and Bracha Ettinger’s matrixial ethics.