Louise Bourgeois, Untitled (Germinal), 1967-95 bronze with dark & polished patina, ed. 5/15. 6 1/2 x 8 1/2 x 8 Screen-print 1/2 inches.


Born in 1911 in France.

Louise Bourgeois left France in the 1930s and moved to America, where she frequented the art crowd of 1940s New York. This included Marcel Duchamp and other Surrealists. However, as a woman, Bourgeois felt isolated from their world. She once said, "I had the feeling that the art scene belonged to the men, and that I was in some way invading their domain. Therefore my work was done but hidden away. I felt more comfortable hiding it."

Bourgeois' sculpture often subverts sexual icons. Untitled (Germinal) challenges the dominating Freudian phallus through flaccid, delicate penile projections.

Femme-Maison is part of a series of drawings and paintings Bourgeois executed around 1946. This etching refers to an earlier work by Surrealist Andre Masson. In 1938, he displayed a female mannequin with a birdcage for a head. Bourgeois' version replaces the woman's head with a house, the symbol of Western domesticity.

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