These Artists Explore the Female Gaze in Erotica (NSFW)

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Crazy Confessions by Cabell Molina (2015). Photo: Cabell Molina/The Untitled Space

Tribeca gallery the Untitled Space is exploring how female sexuality is portrayed in erotica in the new exhibition “Secret Garden: The Female Gaze on Erotica,” opening today. Curated by multimedia artist Indira Cesarine, the show includes paintings, drawings, photography, printmaking, pottery, sculptures, and collages by female artists who use elements of erotica to challenge stigmas surrounding women’s sexuality in the art world.

Many artists took to expressing themes of censorship and sexual liberation. For one piece titled Crazy Confessions, artist Cabell Molina combined pop art and street art, layering iconic photos of Bettie Page and magazine clippings to celebrate the provocateur. In another work titled Self-Portrait With Roses, Hiba Schahbaz strips her subjects down and makes them one with the elements: a Pakistani women lies defiantly on the ground with her limbs entangled in rose vines.

With so many outlets depicting what female sexuality should look like — from pornography to magazines and billboard advertisements — the “Secret Garden” show is designed to highlight a more dynamic female experience. Artworks depict contorted, vulnerable, and simultaneously empowered women as subjects whose sexuality cannot be deduced or simplified to fit stereotypical criteria.

Photo: Natasha Wright/The Untitled Space Gallery

Goodbye to Language by Natasha Wright (2017).

Photo: Cabell Molina/The Untitled Space Gallery

Crazy Confessions by Cabell Molina (2015).

Photo: Brittany Markert/The Untitled Space Gallery

Woman by Brittany Markert (2016).

Photo: Jessica Lictenstein/The Untitled Space Gallery

Lust by Jessica Lichtenstein.

Photo: Hiba Schahbaz/The Untitled Space Gallery

Self Portrait With Roses by Hiba Schahbaz (2014).

Photo: Katie Commodore/The Untitled Space Gallery

Marc and Lisa, No.7 by Katie Commodore.

Photo: Kristin Prim/The Untitled Space Gallery

Fragmented n°1 by Kristin Prim.

Photo: Maia Radanovic/The Untitled Space Gallery

Feminine by Maia Radanovic (2015).

These Artists Explore the Female Gaze in Erotica (NSFW)