I Want To Wear Ladies Clothes: The Pattern Girls by Liza Cowan
Gender, Clothing, and Who Does The Chores
📌20 page softcover, limited edition book of digital collages by Liza Cowan
📌18 full color illustrations plus introduction and a selection of source images.
📌 8" x 8"
📌If you want to shop from outside the US, send me a message to arrange shipping price.
📌I created The Pattern Girls digital collage series beginning in March, 2020 as a way of keeping track of what was happening in my life during the Covid-19 pandemic. At first, as I was adjusting to the pandemic, the collages were about figuring out how to cope with new life skills such as social distancing or how to get groceries. Sometimes The Girls just had adventures as my alter egos. As the series progressed, The Girls started expressing their opinions about social and political topics, from the 2020 elections to heterodox ways of thinking about issues.
The latest addition to the series is “I Want To Wear Ladies Clothes" which is my lighthearted look at the topic of clothing and gender while highlighting some the issues that women have found themselves facing even more than usual during the pandemic: having to do the bulk of the family and household work.
The men in the pictures are from 17th and 18th Century France. They readily illustrate that the distinction between men's and women's clothing is meaningful solely according to time and place. The clothes the men wear would be considered women’s clothing in the 21st century. It’s not hard to recognize that clothing is capriciously gendered, but it remains tough to acknowledge the jobs and duties associated with women are also gendered. The burden of running a household and rearing children remains overwhelmingly the domain of women, even when both parents are home and working.
The men say “look at me” while the women say, “there’s work to be done, mister. Get cracking!”
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