News and notes from Fredericksburg's entertainment scene
Arts in the ‘Burg: Ancient goddess gets bold makeover
Anne Timpano, local artist and former director of UMW’s Ridderhof Martin Gallery, questions the roles and perceptions of the modern woman in her exhibition “Venus: Lessons of a 21st-Century Goddess” at The Backdoor Gallery in Fredericksburg.
Timpano’s works placed the famous figure of Venus from Sandro Botticelli’s “The Birth of Venus” (1482–1485) into the context of the modern woman in her 28-piece exhibition that opens on Saturday.
“Venus was a symbol of female beauty and a standardization or commonly held perception of women,” she said.
Timpano depicts Venus as a typical historical female figure, such as Amelia Earhart and Cleopatra, in her series “Venus as Paper Doll” and as a fashion icon in a parody of a fashion magazine in “Venus as Cover Girl.” Timpano also plays on works by Andy Warhol and Leonardo da Vinci with “Venus as Pop Icon” and “Vitruvian Venus.” The goddess is featured in the Consumermania Series as a paper doll and the Dream Girl Series, where she represents Renaissance religious icons.
The show includes a participatory aspect as well with the Wheel of Fashion, a take on the famous television show that challenges the benefits and risks of a range of choices about the “female self-image and sense of well-being,” according to Timpano.
“All of it is intended to have people who look at it think of these things and how women function in society,” said Timpano. “Their perceptions, manipulations and other factors.”
Timpano’s idea stemmed from a project on paper dolls that she began in 2010, which eventually grew into a multifaceted and multimedia show that questions the roles of women in modern society.
“She has taken an art historical icon and made her a modern woman that accentuates the absurdity and expectations of modern society and women,” said Molly Campbell, assistant director of The Backdoor Gal-lery.
Timpano used linoleum cut prints in a lot of her series and mixed media in both the Consumermania Series, Dream Girls Series and the Wheel of Fashion. The “Vitruvian Venus” is drawn with oil and charisma pencils and graphite.
“I’m very excited about the show,” said Timpano. “I’ve really enjoyed working with the idea, and it has evolved into many pieces that I never expected three years ago.”
Some of the series in Timpano’s show have been featured in exhibitions outside Fredericksburg, but this is the first time all of the works will be shown together.
“It’s been a lot of fun and I am looking forward to seeing people’s reactions,” said Timpano.
Alison Thoet: 540/374-5444