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Lieberman, J.S. (1996). Contemporary Images Of Women In Contemporary Women's Art: Concurrent Trends In Art And Psyche. J. Amer. Psychoanal. Assn., 44S(Supplement):xi-xii.

(1996). Journal of the American Psychoanalytic Association, 44S(Supplement):xi-xii

Contemporary Images Of Women In Contemporary Women's Art: Concurrent Trends In Art And Psyche

Janice S. Lieberman

In this fin de siècle issue of the JAPA, re-formulations and more innovative new formulations of Freud's major theories of female psychology are presented. Concurrent with these developments in psychoanalytic thinking about women have been developments in other fields. In the art world, for example, women artists have increasingly come into prominence during recent years and the works and writings of many of them have reflected an awareness of psychoanalytic concepts, whether latent or manifest. Many of today's artists if not psychoanalyzed themselves, are at least psychoanalytically informed.

The works of art chosen to illustrate the various sections of this issue range from those done prior to 1940 to post-1990, quite serendipitously reflecting the time when Freud was alive and developing his ideas about women and the time when the papers that comprise this journal were written! The painting by Georgia O'Keeffe (1924) (fig. 1) is typical of her flower abstractions. The shapes of the female genital and the wave-like experience of the female orgasm are conveyed in this sensuous libidinal work. Meret Oppenheim's (1936) (fig. 3) surrealist fur-lined teacup and fur-lined spoon (without the artist's conscious intent) presents the psychoanalyst-reader with a delightful dream image that condenses the female genital with the female nurturing function.

Frida Kahlo's (1940) (fig. 2) tormented life, injured and crippled body, and conflictual sexual identity are reflected in this self-portrait in which she depicts herself in an oversized man's suit holding the pair of scissors with which she has cut her hair. After having had polio as a child, an accident in her teens fractured her spine, shattering her pelvis and crushing her foot. Her vagina was impaled with a steel handrail. Judith Shea (1991) (fig.

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