the autonomous eye 

Two women take control of the means of viewing and representation, attempting to affirm an independent means of constructing female identity. The Autonomous Eye is an exploration of the medium of video through the body, and a meditation on the body through video. In this collaborative work, produced during a thematic residency at The Banff Centre titled The Instability of the Feminist Subject, the artists contemplate several issues: What are the mechanisms that produce the sexual discourse that positions women in patriarchal society? Is change possible? Can female artists, looking back with the power gained by shared experience, undermine the power of male framing? – and can they redefine ownership and the control of creativity?  This work marks the first collaboration with Irish artist Pauline Cummins; they have continued to work on projects for over 20 years.



5:10 minutes


The Banff Centre, 1992 (projected video and two small monitors, randomly cycling the tapes); opening gala, herland feminist film festival, Calgary, 1996; ArtCity exhibition, Calgary, 2002; Irish Museum of Modern Art, Dublin, 1996; Irish Cultural Centre, Paris, 2012. Shown in video classes, Canada, US and Ireland as emblematic of 2nd wave feminism.