Judith Bernstein’s Political Rage Continues to Burn in 2017
In today’s world, you cannot escape the political climate or the words and actions of world leaders and shakers; this applies especially to our 45th president Donald J. Trump. His actions and beliefs have sparked outrage across the world and have inspired many people to protest and act, to show their displeasure when previously they never would have.
In art, expressions of anger began immediately and this can be seen in the current work of the feminist artist Judith Bernstein. Bernstein is no stranger to creating political artwork, in fact, her artwork has had political messages from the beginning of her career starting with the Vietnam War
With this history in mind, The Drawing Center in SoHo, commissioned Bernstein to create works that reflected her feelings, as well as the political climate, since Trump was elected president in November 2016. Bernstein did not disappoint, by bringing humor and wittiness to what can only be called a disastrous presidency. Her large scale works such as 'Trump Asteroids', 2017 is an example of how she brings comic relief by making Trump’s face the shape of a penis.
Viewing Bernstein’s works in 'Cabinet of Horrors' is the comic relief one needs after this whirlwind year of 2017. She accurately captures the ignorance of Trump by poking fun at him and his entire administration through her use of neon paint and perfectly placed collaged faces of Hitler, accompanied with Trump and buzzwords like 'Nazi'.
Bernstein is able to show our political frustration in the U.S. in a way that it not overly-intellectual, but is still is effective in its satire. Walking through this exhibit I was able to feel relief, because a female artist not only illustrated the political frustrations with this election, but succeeded in reflecting Trump’s misogyny by depicting him repeatedly as a phallic object. If Bernstein’s goal with this body of work is to inspire others to raise their political voice, she has achieved this successfully.
'Judith Bernstein: Cabinet of Horrors' will be on view at The Drawing Center, New York through February 4, 2018.