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A Womans Worth

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A Womans Worth

Today I am sharing work from a series of provocative paintings exploring the question of what defines A Woman’s Worth? These works were created from a young woman’s experiences, confronting Feminist, Womanist, and Humanist topics of personal and global interest in the mid to late 90’s. The series leans toward dark, surrealistic, symbolic and highly stylized feminine imagery. It covers a wide emotional spectrum exploring the value placed on female fertility, intellect, strength, beauty and the sexuality of women. These extremely personal works question the artist's position as well as women in the world at large. The goal of the work was to ignite a conversation toward awareness and change, to discuss what it means to be female and how we can continue to redefine and improve perception and conditions.
The Ovary Tree by Amy E. Fraser
When a woman is told she is infertile, the healthy women in her life begin to magically glow with overflowing fertility, like ripe Ovary Trees. The female body’s entire purpose for existence is engineered toward this one thing, reproduction. And your body? It has betrayed you. The defeated spirit imagines those other women in their pain free, normal bodies, placidly pumping out eggs, proudly producing the little beings that will help define their future self's worth. Even when you believed you didn't want to have children, the fact that it is no longer an option, destroys you. The loss and the devastation lead you to wonder, what is A Woman's Worth? A Woman's Worth. Painting Series. Acrylic Paint on Canvas by Amy E. Fraser (1995-97). All images copyright Amy E. Fraser. All rights reserved.
"If you have endometriosis, it may be more difficult for you to become pregnant. Up to 30% to 50% of women with endometriosis may experience infertility. Endometriosis can influence fertility in several ways: distorted anatomy of the pelvis, adhesions, scarred fallopian tubes, inflammation of the pelvic structures, altered immune system functioning, changes in the hormonal environment of the eggs, impaired implantation of a pregnancy, and altered egg quality." Find out more @
The Uterine Lake by Amy E. Fraser
Fertility? Infertility? Can we escape our bodily burden? The Uterine Lake is about self identity and the struggle with biology, posing the question of what is A Woman's Worth? A Woman's Worth. Painting Series. Acrylic Paint on Canvas by Amy E. Fraser (1995-97). All images copyright Amy E. Fraser. All rights reserved.
The Uterus is a Motherhood Symbol that is timeless and universal. "We have been using symbols to communicate our thoughts before we even developed the art of writing. Some of the symbols we use today have their roots in the very beginning of intelligent human communication. Among the most enduring symbols that can be found across geographically and culturally diverse civilizations are those that depict motherhood and everything that mothers stand for including; fertility and procreation, guidance and protection, sacrifice, compassion, dependability, and wisdom." Find out more @
"The uterus is a multifaceted symbol that holds great personal and social significance for women. It's image expresses life and death, fears and anxiety, freedom and oppression, power and vulnerability, femininity, motherhood, personal choice, career choice, identity, status, and woman's procreative potential as well as creative potential. It is my belief, that, given the multiplicity of meanings, the uterus stands as both a power symbol and a reminder of who we are. The uterus is representative of the choices we make about our bodies and within our bodies. The uterus is a symbol of our personal and intimate choices, but it also reminds us that we are not alone; every woman has had the same choices. I think the uterus is a positive symbol because being a woman is about these choices and experiences and we should not be ashamed of our struggles, hurts and happiness." --- Chapter 9 Uterus. Sacred Sexuality And Feminine Symbolism. Dissecting The Western Woman Artist; An Artist's Dialogue by Amy E. Fraser.
The Nest by Amy E. Fraser
Who wants to be a Nest anyway? All of those vultures claiming, discussing and manipulating your reproductive organs like they are public property. All hail The Great Mother. The beauty and glory is celebrated by others while woman becomes mere vessel, rooted, faceless, serving the needs of the greater good, determining her value to others, and eventually to herself, through this becoming of The Nest. Meanwhile, the vultures keep reaping the benefits, chattering, tending to The Nest. What is a Woman's Worth? A Woman's Worth. Painting Series. Acrylic Paint on Canvas by Amy E. Fraser (1995-97). All images copyright Amy E. Fraser. All rights reserved.
Dichotomy by Amy E. Fraser
Dichotomy is a division into two parts, groups, or classes, especially when these are sharply distinguished or opposed.
The vultures watch as we struggle with our Dichotomy. Mind over Reproduction? What does one pursue? Do we bow to Mother Nature? Do we rise to our Intellect? Remember how they told women they could be a successful working women and mothers? Tell that to the Latchkey kids and their horrifying memories of what happened to them when they spent their days as unsupervised orphans. Then ask those grown Latchkey Kids what we choose to do with our Dichotomy? What is a woman’s worth? A Woman's Worth. Painting Series. Acrylic Paint on Canvas by Amy E. Fraser (1995-97). All images copyright Amy E. Fraser. All rights reserved.
According to Wiki "The term latchkey kid became commonplace to describe members of Generation X, who according to a 2004 marketing study, "went through its all-important, formative years as one of the least parented, least nurtured generations in U.S. history." Latchkey kids were prevalent during this time, a result of increased divorce rates and increased maternal participation in the workforce, at a time before childcare options outside the home were widely available. These latchkey children, referred to as "day orphans"... mainly came from middle or upper-class homes. The higher the educational attainment of the parents, the higher the odds the children of this time would be latchkey kids."
For centuries, a woman’s youth and beauty were the determinant of her worth. A woman’s worth should be the totality of who she is. A woman is worth more than her outer appearance, more than her title at work, more than her fertility status, more than how much money she makes, more than her waist size, more than the color of her skin, more than the jewelry and name brands she wears, a woman is worth MORE. A woman is worth what she decides she is worth and no individual or society can take away what she determines for herself.
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