Enormous transformations: on male structural violence against women as part of the Western narrative
Object: Maiolica bowl Apollo and Daphne by Ippolito Rombaldoni (1650–1679)
The start of the format series is provided by an actual conversation piece – a maiolica bowl from the Italian Renaissance. These ceramic objects were mainly designed to provide topics for and stimulate conversation, a real Conversation Piece. The selected bowl shows mythological scenes from Ovid’s Metamorphoses. All scenes are linked by the metamorphosis of women fleeing from male sexual violence.
The sociologist and author Dr. Laura Wiesböck talks with us about what everyday metamorphosis rituals women still apply today to protect themselves from sexual assaults. We also ask about the societal significance still ascribed to the preservation of the “purity” of the female body. How do modern male perpetrators still successfully create “safe spaces” in which they can exercise violence against women – whether in sports, art and culture or in the media industry?
We need to talk! The MAK is starting the new art education format Conversation Pieces on 4 October 2022. We will speak with artists, activists, scientists, and personalities from various communities about select objects from the MAK Collection. Conversation Pieces is dedicated to themes like diversity, feminism, participation or loneliness, symbiotic bodies, racism in collections, planet care, and much more. We use the MAK as a polyphonic place for the exchange of ideas and to engage in various sociopolitical discourses and problems that enable new perspectives on an extraordinary collection. Conversation Pieces can be understood as an impetus to make widespread pictorial worlds and narratives visible and to critically question them by talking about them together.