If you’re unfamiliar with her, the fearsome Hindu goddess Kali is known as the great destroyer and creator. She’s often depicted on a cremation ground holding a scimitar and decapitated heads. Her powerful image inspired South African artist Reshma Chhiba to turn a former women’s prison used to hold anti-apartheid activists into a giant vagina complete with a clit, pubic hair and disembodied screams.
Chhiba called “The Two Talking Yonis,” exhibit, “a screaming vagina within a space that once contained women and stifled women,” which comments “on the mythology of female power in patriarchal systems.” In addition, Chhiba hopes that the 39-foot tall vagina will encourage people to think about women’s bodies differently. “You don’t often hear men talking about their private parts and feeling disgust or shamed [as women often do] … And that alone speaks volumes of how we’ve been brought up to think about our bodies, and what I am saying here is that it’s supposed to be an empowering space.”
That vagina and it’s hanging machetes and Kali-like photographic images is certainly fearsome. And, weirdly, very Lynchian. Between the “The Two Talking Yonis” and the “Cliteracy” project, I would say, it’s the year of the vagina in the art world. [Jezebel]