Tim Marlow TV - Louise Bourgeois - Tracey Emin - Great Artists in Their Own Words TV -
Louise Bourgeois: The female body, about her own body being the source of sculpture. Tim Marlow on ... The New Tate Modern
Amoeba 1963-6, cast 1984: Her memory of seeing tadpoles as a young girl ... Much more about the idea about giving birth. ibid.
The Spider is an ode to my mother. She was my best friend. Like a spider, my mother was a weaver. My family was in the business of tapestry restoration, and my mother was in charge of the workshop. Like spiders, my mother was very clever. Spiders are friendly presences that eat mosquitoes. We know that mosquitoes spread diseases and are therefore unwanted. So, spiders are helpful and protective, just like my mother. Louise Bourgeois
An artist can show things that other people are terrified of expressing. Louise Bourgeois
American sculptor, painter and printmaker of French birth. She studied mathematics at the Sorbonne before turning to studio arts. In 1938, after marrying Robert Goldwater, an American art historian, critic and curator, she went to New York, where she enrolled in the Art Students League and studied painting for two years. Bourgeois’s work was shown at the Brooklyn Museum Print Exhibition in 1939. During World War II she worked with Joan Miró, André Masson and other European expatriates.
Although Bourgeois exhibited with the Abstract Expressionists, she never became an abstract artist. Instead, she created symbolic objects and drawings expressing themes of loneliness and conflict, frustration and vulnerability.
In 1949 Bourgeois had her first sculpture exhibition, including Woman in the Shape of a Shuttle, at the Peridot Gallery; this work proved typical of her wooden sculpture and foreshadowed her preoccupations of the following years. Her first sculptures were narrow wooden pieces, such as Sleeping Figure (1950; New York, MOMA), a ‘stick’ figure articulated into four parts with two supporting poles. Bourgeois soon began using non-traditional media, with rough works in latex and plaster contrasting with her elegantly worked pieces in wood, bronze and marble. In the 1960s and 1970s her work became more sexually explicit. The psychological origins of her work are particularly evident in Destruction of the Father (1974; New York, Xavier Fourcade). Bourgeois’s work was appreciated by a wider public in the 1970s as a result of the change in attitudes wrought by feminism and Postmodernism. Tate online
I first heard about Louise Bourgeois in 1995 when she was shown at the Tate. The curator, Stuart Morgan, always used to say to me that I'd like his friend who lived in New York, and the way he talked about her and her art made me think she was someone of my age. So I was quite shocked when I found out she was in her 80s. I was already making work about personal experiences, but Louise was doing it on a different level and, while her work appears to be very emotional, it is also highly intellectual. Even though she was passionate and romantic, she was also very academic and could have been anything – a scientist, a mathematician – but she chose to do art
... Although today there is not a museum in the world that isn’t trying to get their hands on her work, Louise hasn’t become a mainstream artist. She is still out there in her own orbit. When we collaborated I was obviously interested in the work we were doing, but I had no idea of what she was actually giving me. The repercussions – in terms of people met and friendships made – changed my life, which is something you don’t expect when you meet someone. It has been a really lovely thing. Tracey Emin, article The Guardian 28th June 2013, ‘My Hero: Louise Bourgeois by Tracey Emin’
Sculpture Louise Bourgeois made art out of wrestling with her own very personal demons ... ‘I am a prisoner of my memories.’ Great Artists in Their Own Words III