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Eve in the Garden at 70: A Collaboration between Judy Chicago and Donald Woodman

Eve in the Garden at 70: A Collaboration between Judy Chicago and Donald Woodman

Artist: Judy Chicago (American, born 1939)
Artist: Donald Woodman (American, born 1945)
Date: 2009 (printed 2009)
Medium: Inkjet print
Dimensions:
Image: 39 7/8 x 26 1/2 in. (101.3 x 67.3 cm)
Support: 44 x 30 7/8 in. (111.8 x 78.4 cm)
Classification: Photograph
Credit Line: Gift of Judy Chicago and Donald Woodman, 2010
Keywords and Associated Locations:
Object number: 2010.9
Description
In preparation for the opening of Judy Chicago's exhibitions at The Art Gallery of Calgary and The Weiss Gallery, several magazines did extensive interviews with Judy Chicago. Donald Woodman provided most of the photographs including a group of pictures for swerve magazine [a magazine insert that appears in the Friday issues of The Calgary Herald]. On Tuesday, August 25, 2009, a little more than a week before the article was to appear, the Art Director of swerve magazine e-mailed Donald to ask for an original portrait of Judy, one that was "....a beautiful environmental shot of Judy that showcases her creativity (and humor). Perhaps something outside, when the sun is setting, rich with colour and femininity." One challenge was that they needed the picture by Friday of that same week. Despite being extremely busy, Judy and Donald set to work, clearing time in their schedules to try and make the deadline. They came up with an idea that they believed met the requirements of the Art Director and took some preliminary shots on Wednesday afternoon. Donald had mentioned that the new thing in women's magazines was nude photos of older women. Obviously, they wanted to do something tasteful but lively. On Thursday afternoon, the Mayor of Belen (the small New Mexican town where they live) who is also their hair dresser, styled Judy's hair in preparation for the photo shoot. The photo was shot late in the afternoon, in the garden of the Belen Hotel, the historic building where Judy and Donald live and work. They planned to wrap Judy with the air supply hose she uses to spray paint, winding it around a tree to suggest a snake and attaching an apple to Judy's airbrush to make reference to Eve in the garden. To take the picture, Donald had to lie in the grass and Judy had to remain uncharacteristically still. The next morning, Donald sent the picture to the magazine. For hours, he heard nothing. Finally, he called to make sure that it was received and he was told that the swerve magazine staff were in a meeting. Apparently, this meeting was about the staff's desire to print the picture on the cover of swerve magazine (they loved it) and management's [The Calgary Herald] refusal to do so. Donald and Judy were shocked because they never expected censorship in Canada, a country they had looked to as an alternative to some of the conservative leanings that have degraded the American art discourse.
Not on view