Building Babylon (is woman's work)  Ricahrd (Duke) Hagerty

Jennifer Henriques Phillips

Building Babylon (is woman's work)

monotype prints and oil paintings

Artist Statement:
Building Babylon (is woman’s work)
consists of three elements: the title of the series, the iconography within the 34 monotypes and the non-verbal titles of each piece. This series can be approached as conceptual, inviting the viewer to integrate the disparate components into a dialogue to access for her or himself possible modes of experience. This dialogue, the prism through which the work can be seen, is intended to include both the individual monotype and the body of work as a whole. Explicit images of femaleness juxtapose metaphors of the masculine.

Babylon, the mythical, the biblical, the historical, projects a rich ground of metaphor in which today’s experience of the femaleness of being can be couched.

The masculine attributes of Babylon, conqueror and lawgiver, also embraces the feminine: Babylon is the Greek variant of the Akkadian Babilu, meaning “gateway to the gods.” A place both of renowned beauty and of exile, Babylon has, throughout history, come to represent depravity and oppression.

How does an authentic femaleness navigate the fine line that divides the perception of woman’s body as sacred/profane, adored/excoriated, protected/brutalized, idealized/marginalized? These are the core, albeit not exclusive, questions I ask of my work and myself.