Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Windfalls Art Tie-In

In the Spring 2008 issue of Ms. is an article about artist Barbara Carrasco whose art work deals with skin color and oppression most specifically as it has impacted the Chicana community. One of her featured works is her 1978 "Pregnant Woman in a Ball of Yarn". I tried to Google this to include a link to the work, but had no luck. The lithograph is of a naked pregnant woman entrapped in a ball of yarn with a knitted baby bootie shown as well as an ominous knitting needle. The article descibes the work stating that the artist: "tackles the issue of unwanted pregnancy and the inevitable invisibility, entrapment and social isolation of young unwed mothers. One of her most renowned and haunting images, it captures the economic immobilization experienced by young, poor women of color who find themselves pregnant with no, or very little, emotional support. At the same time, it flies in the face of the sanctification of motherhood by Mexican and Chicana/o culture."

Both the lithograph and the description of it reminded me of Windfalls. Although both of the women in the book were probably white, many of the issues were the same. However, neither faced the "sanctification of motherhood" in their culture nor the religious issue of abortion except Cherise's connection through the clinic. Our discussions really never hit with much depth on the pregnancy decisions nor on how these issues impact different cultural groups.

A little late for the book's discussion, but the article especially this artwork was more meaningful to me because I had read Windfalls.

1 comment:

Bonnie Jacobs said...

Not too late at all, Shirley. Thanks for sharing this. I tried to find the image also, with no luck, but your description of it tells us a lot. The religious issue was once a lot bigger than it is for some people today, and it would have been a good topic for us to dig into.