“When Kiki Smith calls her work “femme”, she wants us to see her “feminine/feminist” leanings. She does not hide from or deny what shaped her as what she calls a “girl child”. She loves lace and embroidery, and playing with dolls and dollhouses, always recognizing their seductive-cum-dangerous aspect. When she calls her work “sweet”, she means it literally and honestly - that it has a sweetness or gentleness to it that is undeniable and even bittersweet. And by “sexy”, she most certainly is not invoking a Playboy vision of sex appeal; rather, she intends to invoke a dual experience of pleasure and anxiety that is at the very core of sexuality itself.
The impact of Smith’s work undoubtedly lies in the shock of seeing the “body” dissected and laid bare, not with the detachment of a technician, but with the feeling and passion of someone who cares. The primary subject of her work - the body - also happens to be the primary battleground of our day, sexually and politically. Her work does not talk about the body, it is the body. She has moved from renderings of its anonymous interior and biological processes to representations of it as the site of abjection. Just as many of us today question whose values and whose judgement we follow, Kiki Smith asks whose body and whose power controls it”
-Linda Shearer 1992
holy shit. yeah. i’ve never heard of kiki smith before but i am intrigued.