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Empowerment and equality

Lightbourn opens a space for dialogue on women’s issues
  • Sue Katz-Lightbourn, ‘Pink Angel’ (2016), paper mache wings, plaster cast, vintage ads, found objects, dimensions variable.


Published: Apr 29, 2017

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Sue Katz Lightbourn’s exhibition, ‘Exposed’, opened at Antonius Roberts’ Hillside House Gallery on the evening of Thursday, April 13th, 2017. The show is a fun, thought-provoking, yet challenging journey through a world of images collected and reassembled out of context and time. Collage and assemblage lend a great deal of lightness and offer accessibility to the serious discussion of women’s roles in society and the mental, physical and emotional controls society places on them.

Katz tackles this minefield of gendered programming and the women who blaze a trail through space and across boundaries, very much in the manner of Virginia Woolf’s 1929 essay ‘A Room of One’s Own’, that declares the need for women to have a private space where they can create and simply be. Women are always being told how to look and how to be in order to be pleasing to the proverbial male gaze.

The entertainment, publicity, and marketing industries all send powerful messages of what is “normal” that make us judge ourselves and others based on entirely artificial and materialistic ideas and images. Katz captures the innocuous, unrelenting attack on our psyche that is so often unperceived. We become embroiled in a world of images that dictate how we think we should look and how we should behave. Of course, one of the big ones is diet and being the right size and shape. Although no two people are created the same, we are meant to be ruled by an image of what is standard and acceptable beauty in order to fit in. Girls are taught to starve