Anna U. Davis, Shamefaced, 2017, mixed media on cut‐out birch plywood, 51 1⁄2 x 41 1⁄2 inches. Courtesy of Galerie Myrtis
Damsels in Distress - Black Edge Wall Sculpture
by Anna U Davis
April 14 – June 9, 2018
Galerie Myrtis is pleased to present its first solo exhibition by graphic mixed‐media artist Anna U. Davis. In “Damsels in Distress – Black Edge Wall Sculptures” Davis critically examines issues of sexual harassment and gender inequality. By combing black and white ink, and acrylic paint to contoured birch plywood, Davis creates sculptural figures that explore misogynistic behavior and investigates the physical and emotional impact through her personal lens.
The exhibit runs from April 14th through June 9th. Visit website for programming information. www.GalerieMyrtis.net
Anna U. Davis states, “We only see the top of the iceberg. What lurks beneath, are stereotypes highly steeped in tradition, culture and religious beliefs. These stereotypes are holding women back from reaching their full potential. It will take all of us to change this pattern. Men have to take action, instead of sitting on the sidelines and accepting the sexist behavior that occurs in daily interactions. Men need to speak up and show by example their disapproval of these attitudes. Women should empower each other and not undermine each other. We are not enemies, even though I have witnessed the repeated interaction between women that reinforce the very things that keep us down. Women are so often portrayed and treated as victims in need of rescuing, hence the title of the show “Damsels in Distress.”
The works exhibited investigates these issues and draws from my personal beliefs and experiences. From the girl who grew up in Sweden to the woman living her life in the United States, I grew up believing that I could become whatever I dreamed of and I was lucky to have encouraging parents and live in a progressive city in Sweden. Sweden is, after all, a country which is number five on the list of most gender equal countries in the world. Regardless of those circumstances, Swedish society was not without inequality and sexist views. Girls and boys are indoctrinated from an early age with gender expectations. Girls are supposed to act in a certain way; be pretty, accommodating and nurturing. They are the designated caretakers, while boys are taught to be strong, aggressive, and bold. They are the providers and the protectors. Why is it that when girls show qualities which resemble the characteristics of a leader, they are called “bossy,” the word is used as a negative connotation; while boys exhibiting the same characteristics are praised for their determination and leadership skills. Attitudes have to change, amongst both men and women. If we can't do that, this vicious circle will never be broken.
The idea behind the construction of the work in “Damsels in Distress,” originated from transforming my grey “Frocasian” (an amalgam of Afro and Caucasian) characters of my mixed media paintings into starkly black and white drawings, exploring my subject matter primarily through line and form. These black and white drawings became the inspiration for the development of the wall sculptures exhibited in “Damsels in Distress.” called “Black Edge.” The “Black Edge” sculptures are constructed with black and white ink, and acrylic paint applied onto cut‐out birch plywood, and it's contour defined by its black painted edges. These plywood sculptures immersed from the idea of deconstructing the common support medium structure, the rectangle. By separating the figures from the picture plane and installing their cut‐out shapes slightly away from the wall, you are left with a more fluid creation, which breaks away from traditional structure and form.”
For additional information on this exhibition, please contact the gallery at (410) 235‐3711 or
2224 North Charles Street * Baltimore, MD 21218 410.235-3711 * GalerieMyrtis.net