Resurrecting the forgotten careers of women artists can make for bittersweet exhibitions. On one hand, it’s exciting when a visionary woman finally gets the attention she deserves. On the other hand, the institutionalized sexism that erased her creative input is thoroughly enraging.
Nowhere is this felt more intensely than in A Feast of Astonishments: Charlotte Moorman and the Avant-Garde 1960s-1980s, currently at the Grey Art Gallery. Organized by a curatorial team largely connected to Northwestern University (the show first premiered at their Mary & Leigh Block Museum of Art), the expansive exhibition firmly establishes Charlotte Moorman as a performance art force alongside seminal Fluxus artists like Nam June Paik, John Cage and Yoko Ono. In a response to art historical misogyny, the show essentially returns her artistic agency 25 years after her death in 1991.