The Cursed Boyfriend Sweater
artist: Makeda Duong
Opening Night: Thursday 5th November 5.30-7.30pm
Guest Speaker: LIzzy Emery, Artist and Textiles Lecturer, UniSA
Exhibition Dates: 5-28 November
The Cursed Boyfriend Sweater is an exploration of contemporary womanhood using traditional ‘women’s work’ mediums such as knitting and embroidery. Sourcing inspiration from needlework traditions that have persisted for hundreds of years, to the most current internet fads and trends, I seek to examine the undercurrents within women’s lives. The idea of ‘women’s invisible work’ has been a constant focus throughout this exhibition. Whether it’s spending unseen hours knitting a jumper for a loved one, endless time and effort on hair removal, or cleaning the house week after week, this type of work never goes away and it never gets easier. Australian society has seen a huge shift towards women’s liberation, yet women still perform the majority of housework and childcare.
Historically, the production of beautiful needlework by housewives was seen as part of their role as the ideal wife or mother. This type of work was not valued anywhere near as much as traditionally male dominated art forms, such as painting or sculpture, just as ‘women’s work’ like care work is undervalued today. This exhibition seeks to bring attention to how cultural attitudes that have been prevalent for hundreds of years are still very much alive, and how they affect how we view the roles of wives, mothers, and girlfriends.