May Stevens, All-y all-y in-free, 1996. Mixed media collage/assemblage with hair, tobacco, mirror, purse, match sticks, etc. 33x41 inches.


Born in 1924 in Boston, Massachusetts.

The mysterious combination of elements in All-y all-y in-free provides clues to the story of a young child abuse victim. Stevens' process of collage invites chance into a composition, just as fate unpredictably alters one's life. Stevens believes that "...art is about breaking the rules, trying to surprise the sought after even as you are surprised by it."

Stevens comments on well-known male critics who essentialize women. She explains that once women achieve success they are labeled, and the field is diminished. She writes, "Think of the differing ways in which women's use of sewing or embroidery or crocheting in a painting or sculpture is evaluated compared to such appropriation by men...We do indeed have a long way to go, a number of definitions to rewrite--with our work, our art, our voices..."

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