Cathy Opie

September 30, 2008

I had the amazing honor and all around good-time of getting to attend my friend Cathy’s opening at the Guggenheim last Thursday. Yes, that’s right. The Guggenheim. I could gush about how amazing it was seeing her work on four floors (sharing the museum with no less than Louise Bourgeoise. [it would be interesting to know how many women total have had solo shows there]), and how beautifully she handled this intense life moment: having fun, being smart, looking great. I could go on and ramble about how wild and wonderful it was to see so many queers (lesbians, drag queens, gay men, transgendered humans of various degrees and persuasions), roaming the halls of this hallowed institution: invited, respected, central.

But this blog is about Media Praxis, and I tend not to get either too gushy or personal. So, what was so moving to me then, in this context, was to see Cathy as an exquisite renderer of the ideas I follow here: putting ideology, lived experience, and a theoretical stance into a queer feminist media practice.

I am a friend, a fan, and not an art historian. But looking at Cathy’s work, and listening to her speak about it, allowed me to reflect upon her skilled and rare abilities to bring aesthetic complexity to personal and political sophistication.


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