Sunday, May 08, 2011

The Big Reveal! Battle of the Sexes Voting Results

The votes have been tallied! Exactly half the artists' work were voted as being made by the opposite sex. The percentages listed above show the percentage of voters who guessed correctly. Percentage above 50% were correct, below 50% were incorrect. Percentage between 40%-60% could be considered more gender ambiguous, and about half the artists fall in the ambiguity zone. Percentages above 70% reflect the artist was working stongly within visual or material gender traditions, and only about a quarter of the artists fall in this zone. Percentages below 40% show the artist was perhaps subverting gender stereotypes and really fooled the viewers.

Patrick Burgoyne's felted and beaded mandalas really threw viewers, and received the most incorrect votes. See everybody? Men can be fiber artists too!!!

Nicole Dul's Los Ramblas print was deemed the most "masculine" of the women artists work. Why? Because it's all blue? Because it's a print?
Color was definitely a determining factor in viewer's perceptions. All of the men's work that was voted more "feminine" contained the color pink or other warm color. All but one female printmaker was considered more "masculine", and the "masculine"-voted women artist's work contained cooler colors.
Surprisingly, most of the sculpture in the exhibit was voted as feminine. Paintings were ambiguous to the viewers, and depended most on subject matter.  Work involving technology, like video, photography, or digital imagery was voted as masculine. The fact that so much of the work was ambiguous in gender is a positive result and shows how artists are breaking down gender stereotypes. The fact that color (pink and blue!) and media (Fiber and technology!) were voted so overwhelmingly as one or the other gender reveals that viewers do project gender stereotypes when viewing artwork.
It's not too late to see the show! You still have until May22 to visit.
Delaware Art Museum

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