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A Study on Female Self-Identity-In the creation of oil painting by Chu Hsiang-Ting
Abstract Beginning in 2010, this research takes body as the pivot of creative process, investigating the body as an eternal subject for art and how cellective consciousness and individual identity are shaped. Female body not only plays the role of muse in art field but also is the ever-changing “goddess” images in modern society. Body has been living in art for a long history and the genders of body have respectively carried different languages and histories. Ever since a body is born, it has undergone the discipline and gaze from the society; the body is divided into male and female which are constantly learning role playing to meet society’s anticipations. Being inspired by how female images are displayed in mass culture of everyday life and what subjects for female body are created during my time in leaning art, I wish to share some of female’s physiological and psychological experiences in this paper. In mass media, it is often seen that a female celebrity is reviled by public opinions only because gaining body weight, especially for those “goddesses” who have always been appropriated to fill the entertainment pages in newspapers. There is no right for a “goddess” to gain weight. Why the “goddess” phenomenon is increasing in popular culture so rapidly? How ordinary females are influenced by this “goddess” phenomenon created by mass media? Does it lead to the conclusion that one has to be identified with mass media’s values in order to avoid being marginalized by the society? Body is the practice field of power and knowledge; however, our society seems to encourage female to conceal or suppress self-consciousness and such concealment or suppression will eventually help to build a body discipline for female collective consciousness. The “goddess” phenomenon or stardom circulated by mass media has intensified such mentality and, with the help of technology, the media has immersed deeply inside the life of common people and has also created an idolized world easier than ever. This whole process has come to a deadlock where only duplication and repetition take place in shaping female’s self images. This study, based upon feminist theory, tries to understand how popular culture is portrayed by analyzing several works from Pop art to postmodern art and in what way do female self identification is influenced and shaped by mass media; the study also re-evaluate the works of its author in an attempt to clarify her creative status at this very moment and possible directions for her future creative works. Key Words: Female Body, Body, Goddess, Mass media, Popular Culture
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