Natural not Naked II

  • Amelia Lovell

The connection between women and nature goes back centuries, as does the prioritization of ‘masculine’ society over ‘feminine’ nature. From my dissertation, the story of Adam and Eve is reflective of the social practices both during the renaissance and continued to the modern day. Eve was a representation of female humanity, and her act gave men the excuse to look down upon, condemn, and even discriminate against practically all the women in their lives. By reclaiming the image of my body and drawing parallels between its submissive form and the pliancy of mother nature, I aim to reassert the importance of ecofeminism and the role the female body plays in our perception of Earth’s value. This is something I will continue to explore and execute after my degree. I encouraged the viewers to follow the paintings clockwise around the room as they were deliberately hung to tell the common Renaissance narrative of life to death. The first painting is branching out toward the viewer mimicking the limbs of trees. Displayed in the middle (this one), a linen canvas, the work closely resembles nature in decay. The body becomes more hunched and depicts a language of shame and retreat. Finally, returning to a cotton canvas, the tryptic concludes with a final body seen sideways and completely curled up. The bent back follows the circular motion of the narrative of life and death.