On the occasion of the Women’s World Cup, held this year in Germany, the LGBT Museum (Schwules Museum) has invited artists who have used their media to explore the interesting interplay of gender, (homo)sexuality, and football.
The exhibition seeks to nail football’s colors to the mast by addressing the sport in the context of the “doing gender” framework, in which football is exposed as a social and cultural space to confront the societal gender order.
The exhibit will present twenty-three works by artists from all over Germany including photography, video, object art, plastic, installation art, and documentaries. The spectrum of questions to do with this subject is as diverse as the artists own perspectives:
Do men really play faster and, therefore, better than their female counterparts? Do these women, on the other hand, play more beautifully? And if not, why is such a stress on this conception? What are 2011’s best teams and players? Is there tension that traps the bodies of female athletes between a desire for perpetual optimization for performance that continuously pushes the boundaries of personal vulnerability and marketing strategies that demand that these players’ athletic “masculine” bodies have to appear as stereotypically sexually attractive feminine bodies?
How political is football and how lesbian is it? Is it a classic space for the development of female masculinity and not hetero-normative femininity – a classic field for lesbian women? But why are the achievements of many lesbian players for the development of women’s football not recognized or celebrated? Why is there such a nasty reaction to the issue of homosexuality in football?
What erotic subtexts play a role and do things fall into place when football – the classical men’s sport – and its traditions confront stereotypical women’s activities such as sewing, crocheting, and cooking? And last but not least, whatever happened to that coffee set that was the reward for the German winners of the 1989 women’s European Championship?
The participating artists are: Marion Denis, Risk Hazenkamp, Christian Romed Holthaus, Linda Horn, Gudrun Knapp, Maria Kossak, Käthe Kruse, Julia Lazarus, Soo-San Lee, Jenny Löbert, Albert Markert, Robert Lange, Christine Olderdissen, Monika Ortmann, Susken Rosenthal, Toni Schmale, Katja M. Schneider, Siobhan Tarr, Maik Teriete, Franziska Vollborn, Tom Weller.
We will also display the famous porcelain set that the German women’s team received as recognition for its victory in the European Championship in 1989 (lent by Petra Landers).
Curator: Dr. Birgit Bosold