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Category: Featured essays

From famous figures and works to contemporary pieces and their implications, read up on the engaging essays from some of Yiara’s contributors.

Dressed for the Gods: Women, Modernity, and Neoclassical Fashion in Post-Revolutionary France – Mackenzie Aker

In art and in life, the past is consistently revived to speak to concerns of the present. In the late 1700s, interest in the Classical era was stimulated by significant archaeological discoveries at Pompeii and Herculaneum, placing the art and cultures of the ancient Mediterranean at the forefront of European cultural discourses. These discoveries led to a movement of both male and female makers who drew inspiration from art, literature, and utopian ideas surrounding antique cultures and incorporated them into their contemporary practices.

The Subversions of Angel Zárraga: From Saint Sebastian to Soccer Players – Sam Lirette

Angel Zárraga (1886–1946)  is a Mexican-born painter who spent most of his professional life in Paris. After establishing roots in Cubism, the artist abandoned the style in favour of a more classicist style. Characterized by a desire for a retour à l’ordre, this return to classicism became a recurring theme with European (especially Parisian) artists of the early twentieth century1. Particularly, this outlined increasing anxieties concerning the degradation of traditional gender roles, such as the emasculation of men and increased social mobility of women2. I argue that Zárraga’s formal shifts do not speak of such anxieties, but rather illustrate an exceptional critique of the aforementioned expectations.  I aim to demonstrate how the homoeroticism present in Zárraga’s paintings subverts traditional norms and provides an intensely modern viewpoint, namely through role reversals and a play with sexual ambiguity.

Interwar Anxieties Through Female Representations, Between Paris and Mexico – Alice Pessoa de Barros

The interwar period saw many social and political changes in Europe and Latin America. Europe suffered countless deaths during World War I, women were increasingly present in the workforce, and Paris, as the center of the art world, became home to numerous foreign artists. These changes brought anxieties with regards to depopulation and xenophobia, as this new influx of foreign artists was well-received, but not without compromises.

A Spotlight on Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) Artists – Meera Raman

Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) artists are often left out of the conversation, especially when it comes to representation in the media. “There has been a very long-standing history of invisibility and narrow representation of Asian Americans in media,” says  Chriistine Minji Chang, the global executive director of Kollaboration, in an interview with NPR.  Kollaboration is an organization that works to create spaces for Asian American musicians. In the spirit of creating space, this article highlights four upcoming and established AAPI artists, as well as their incredible work.

“La source de la honte est aussi celle des plus grandes voluptés”. Horreurs et puissances du désir – Léa Beauchemin-Laporte

Le roman Méduse (2020) de Martine Desjardins donne à voir « l’expérience subjective de la laideur, considérée dans sa double polarité : d’une part telle qu’elle est vécue par ceux que l’on considère comme laids et, d’autre part, telle qu’elle est éprouvée par celui qui ressent une impression de laideur et désigne une personne comme laide ». La narratrice, surnommée Méduse, y est désignée comme un être abominable. À travers son récit, elle nous donne accès au regard que celleux qui la trouvent hideuse portent sur elle, mais aussi au sien, rempli de honte.

Lire la romance – Lune Wagner

Il est parfois reproché à la romance de perpétuer des stéréotypes misogynes comme la glorification de la féminité (au désavantage de l’esprit, de l’intelligence ou de l’humour), ou bien la soumission des femmes dans les scènes érotiques. Alors, pourquoi lire la romance lorsqu’elle semble participer à l’enracinement d’une société sexiste  ? 

Parlons punk ? – Lune Wagner

Prends un café et ton imagination, je t’emmène à Olympia, capitale de l’État de Washington. On est dans les années 70 lorsqu’un nouveau campus pointe le bout de son pavillon : l’université publique d’Evergreen.

Maria Vermeer’s Secret Career – Sophia Perring

In recent years, six of thirty-four of Dutch artist Johannes Vermeer’s paintings have been revealed to actually be the work of his daughter, Maria Vermeer. In this essay, Sophia Perring examines why she has remained unknown to us for so long.

“L’Archiviste” de Celia Perrin Sidarous – Marie-Hélène Durocher

L’exposition L’Archiviste se présente, à première vue, comme un véritable collage à même les murs du musée McCord, où se côtoient objets et images tirés de la collection du musée et de la collection personnelle de l’artiste. Mais il en est bien plus, Celia Perrin Sidarous y met efficacement en relation l’Histoire et les histoires, l’historique et l’anodin.