Fat art in Boston

Anyone in Boston might want to check out the Herb Ritts Gallery at the Museum of Fine Arts through May 10. The Photographic Figures exhibition features "Venus of Willendorf '91" by Harriet Casdin-Silver a feminist artist known for her work in holograms.

The piece was originally made for the cover of the magazine Sculpture in 1991. Its a stunning piece featuring a woman modeling as a stand-in for the famous Venus sculpture. One isn't used to seeing a fat person in this kind of artistic context. Especially given the realism of holography. The form is emphatically real in a culture which too often tries to negate the reality of fat bodies. Its a small piece, but one well worth seeing. Especially encouraging is the item description. A lot of "fat" art is really art the fat positive community appropriated from artists who depict our bodies as metaphors without much interest in our humanity. In this case, the artist set out to create fat positive art. The model isn't just a fat woman. The photographer sought out a fat activist to pose for the piece. Very cool.

The MFA galleries are open to the public on Wednesday evenings and of course there is plenty else to see while you're there (I'd personally recommend the musical instrument collection) so if you have a chance try to check it out.