A pioneering artist of the feminist movement since the 1970s, Applebroog constantly evolves her visual vocabulary and draws from a diverse array of themes, memories, and mass media sources. These range from her own genitalia to dolls and mannequins, to cartoon characterizations of people in her life, to fashion models and accouterment – and, most recently, birds.
The series ‘Angry Birds of America’, of which ‘Cardinal’ (2018) is a part, grew out of this interest and was developed during a time of grief and rage, expressed with new intensity in American politics: the period saw the beginning of Donald J. Trump’s presidency, the concomitant rise of white nationalism and anti-immigration violence. Mass shootings in Las Vegas and Texas, the #MeToo movement, and women’s long suppressed anger at accepted sexual affront and assault in the workplace were brought into public focus.
A self-proclaimed ‘generic artist’ and an ‘image scavenger,’ painter and feminist pioneer Ida Applebroog has spent the past five decades conducting a sustained inquiry into the polemics of human relations. She explores themes of violence and power, gender politics, women’s sexuality and domestic space using images stylistically reminiscent of comics, at once beguiling and disturbing.