Art in the Afternoon: Separation Anxiety in Pelham

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Haley Hasler, Portrait of a Lady Bearing Snacks, 2010, oil on linen

From the Pelham Arts Center, a very cool looking exhibit of fourteen artists exploring “modern notions of parenthood.”  It’s called, what else– Separation Anxiety. February 3 through March 31.

An opening reception will take place on Friday, February 3, 6:30-8:00 p.m. during which time you may participate in some related art projects in the Gallery.

As significant numbers of women have entered the work force since the 1970s in response to shifting economic needs and the influence of the Feminist movement, Jean-Jacques Rousseau’s long honored notion of the “Good Mother” and the demand that she blithely sacrifice all for the good of her children and family has been challenged and reevaluated. But as women have taken a place within the domestic AND public realms, conservative groups have predictably lamented the decline of “family values.”

Within that cry, the child has often been portrayed as endangered and lost while mothers seeking to redefine their roles and obligations are seen as frantic and on the verge of unraveling. While far from being resolved, such debates are symptomatic of a cultural anxiety over the state of popular ideals of familyhood and a realization that these idealistic, largely unattainable notions of the family should continue to be frankly reconsidered in the 21st century.

Separation Anxiety will feature the work of: Claudia Alvarez, Monica Bock, Erika DeVries, Leslie Dick, Elizabeth Douglas, Haley Hasler, Connie Hatch, Ellina Kevorkian, Kate Kretz, Marcos Rosales, Karen Schwenkmeyer, Mark Stockton, Abbey Williams, and Jennifer Wroblewski.

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