Sydney Ladies Artists Club

A social and support organisation for invited female artists based in Sydney.

Friday, January 13, 2006

SLAC Q&A (I): Why a ‘Ladies’ Club?

This is probably a contentious area to speak about, and one that’s certainly open to debate, but – sometimes it’s just easier to keep the sexes apart, isn’t it? Segregation of men and women used to happen all the time in past eras (and still does in certain cultures) – ladies retiring to the drawing room leaving men to smoke their after-dinner cigars and drink whiskey; ‘Ladies Only’ sections in pubs. As post-feminists, we haven’t experienced this sense of formalised segregation in day to day life, so perhaps it’s time to experiment with it?

It can seem as though men and women are very different creatures at times – who hasn’t looked at their partner/friend/associate of the opposite sex and wondered just what it is that goes on in their head when they make the bed that way/say those kinds of things/behave like that in public?

Men should be more like women, and women should be more like men - but sometimes it’s just so much easier to stick with our own kind, so we can relax, be ourselves, understand each other, feel that we’re coming from the same place, even for just a short while.

(All that being said, the Ladies Club is open to the involvement of men in various events and contexts, this being at the discretion of the organiser of a SLAC event).


Blogger ap said...

"so we can relax, be ourselves"...then maybe it's just me that I get nervous writing comments for the club (though things seem different when I write them down). So seeing as we're all "ladies" there should be more blogging! Soon we'll be getting along like the woman in Sex and the City, or the girls in The Saddle Club. But S & the C was a small group of close friends and SC loved horses... Yes you're right there is something experimental about the Ladies Club, which may account for why I didn't see it as specifically about something - but I kind of like that. So do women in a club get along so well when there's nothing specifically attracting them - no knitting or feminism. (Guess there's art..oh I'll have to rewrite that.)
(I don't call myself a feminist as I don't like all the crap they go on about instructing women to work - though woman should have the choice - I prefer to say I'm against sexism.)

11:15 pm  
Blogger E Pulie said...

I don't like being made to feel like I have to go to work, either. But there must be schools of feminist thought that don't emphasise the need for women to behave like men in their day-to-day activities? I haven't done any feminist studies at all, so I wouldn't know, but - maybe there's a branch of feminism that values a woman's decision to stay home and do non-commercial activities?

11:08 am  
Blogger E.Richardson said...

as a young feminist i liked to reaffirm to myself there was no difference between girls and boys - but as a more maturer (yes i am older?!@$) feminist (I am happy to call myself thus) I think the exact opposite -

that there are heaps of differences between men and women -

perhaps this is why I just seem to enjoy the company of women it is just fun and i don't really care if men are there or not but of course it works in the sense it adds a rich variety to ones social life - and besides male artists on the whole are more likely to be competitive, ego driven, smart arses - but that is just a generalization - really some of them are fine on a one to one basis ...... even sometimes in group situations - and actually come to think of some women are like that too maybe even me sometimes -

but this thing we got going on in Sydney - it is not the same everywhere - that as a bunch of girls we are so willing to come together like this I think is kind of special and a little unique

5:03 pm  
Blogger ap said...

I just wrote lots of stuff and I lost it! testing

10:22 pm  
Blogger E Pulie said...

write it all again, AP.

10:47 am  
Blogger ap said...

I should have said "I don't like all the crap some feminists go on about instructing women to work" - I feel like crap leaving out that important word "some". I don't know if there's a "branch of feminism that values a woman's decision to stay home and do non-commercial activities" - some artist seem aware of that though - I guess they live it.
It's funny how the media took on the women getting a job aspect of some feminists writings - it far outweighed the attention they paid to other aspects.

3:37 pm  
Blogger S.Goffman said...

I don't think anybody likes having to goto work! If only I was paid to keep the house nice...
We are all struggling to find people we identify with, men and women. I love both, and wish for the club to include both sexes, but it's often the men who get all funny about whether or not there'll be other men there. We don't want to generalise, but there really are good and bad traits to both.
Uh-oh, I sound like 'Socialist Sarah'...
but I do adore feminism, and would never underestimate it's power and attempt to bring hope.

5:42 pm  
Blogger birdmonkey said...

For me the main idea of feminism is one of equality between the sexes. This does not mean that men and women are the "same" but that they should enjoy the "same" social opportunties.
"one voice, one vote"
"equal work, equal pay" (meaning if you do the same job as a guy you get the same wage- and ladies when i started earning money this was not the case- and also that the glass sealing should not exist- why is that the highest price paid for LIVING women artists is lower- way lower that of thier male counter parts)

Other feminist campaigns are focused on women being paided for thier home duties- or being a domestic manager. But with the current government asking single mothers to go on the dole and loose single mothers benifits thier priority of raising children is being treated as not valid.

There are lots of wonderful feminist thinkers who write about sexual difference and the social position of women that are worth exploring.

As I remember part of the motivation about the formation of this group was Elvis work in Archive that really demonstrated the difference that occur when womens work is written about as opposed to mens. Elvis you should write an entry about this..

I am feminist. proud and continuing to work equality and respect of my peers.

10:52 am  
Blogger E.Richardson said...

I didn't know that

but yeah i felt really daggy when i thought of doing the research for '24 Men + 6 Women'- cause it did seem like an old fashioned way to look at the world - in terms of anylizing the media on a totally gender basis.

But the sad truth is that for example in the Broadsheet statistics - artists in advertisments were fairly equal between women and men but that was the beginning and the end of it.

next thing you know there are twice as many male writers, they write about 3 times as many men and show 3 times as many images of male artists works, and mention mens names 3 times as often as women artists enjoy.

So we have probably progressed from some dismal statistic of like 10% to 30% of representation in art magazines - but that still stinks of systemic discrimination to me - because it wasn't just Broadsheet all of the magazines i looked at had practically the same result!!!!

perhaps the first women curators of the venice biennale made an impact after all - as i was reading village voice art critic jerry saltz,saltz,71734,13.html

12:52 pm  
Blogger la said...

After attending Slide Night 2, I agreewith you Liz - sometimes it's easier to keep the sexes apart. Sometimes it's just easier to keep the sexes apart. I would like to suggest we stick with our kind just for these events. After all it is a Ladies Club. I much rather prefer comments, such as at the Slide Night, from the Ladies. I think the discussion can really then grow. I see this as a meeting with some people rather than a public showing.I love Regina's rules: 4 slides only and n the other hand, found all the images presented that night icebergs for exploration. More! and with the audience we have chosen , so we can fart and complain as much as we want ( metaphorically)

12:58 pm  

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