Miss America shown with sex scenes in the background.
Excerpt from wall label text for the exhibition entitled “The Unexpected Encounters of Looking Again," November 28 - March 15, 2007:
Colescott’s drawing of Miss America is very much in line with the artist’s usual commitment to satirical, biting, and often comic reflections. Although much of Colescott’s work deals with race, this work, drawn in a sordid, comic book reel manner, confronts America’s chosen female representative. At first glance, the viewer might only notice the caricature-like features of Miss America, yet upon closer inspection, one can observe the narrative of this young woman’s journey unfold. The impact of the work retains its biting, ironic message despite changes in scale and color. In fact, the starkness and force of the subject matter seems to come through stronger because of the reduction of color and the emphasis on line. It is easy to describe this work as an example of the objectification of women, but at a deeper level it questions the values of the viewer. The ideal has been set and we as viewers subscribe to the emblematic figure of Miss America. Through Colescott’s hyperbolic gestures, the viewer can see this objectification in a different way. - Rebecca Karp (M.A. '08)
adults; African American; nudes; women; sex; satire
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