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‘Middle Child: Photographs’ Questions Binary Identity

Apr. 25, 2017
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“For transgender people, there is a prevailing narrative that success entails trading one binary identity for another to pass as the opposite sex,” says Alex Orellana, third-year MFA student in the UW-Madison Art Department. “Despite not wanting to transition, I have my own health reasons to take hormones, and the effects of that process led me to create this body of work. The medicine makes me increasingly androgynous, and I want to share the experience of how that affects my social interactions.”

“Middle Child: Photographs” (April 28-June 25 at the Chazen Museum of Art, 750 University Ave., Madison, Wis.) is a series of self-portraits that finds Orellana adopting hairstyles, clothes, postures and mannerisms that read either masculine or feminine. The exhibition lends itself to timely reflections on the adequacy of gender binaries and the assumptions that are made on the basis of outer appearance.

Orellana, who was awarded the 2017 Chazen Museum Prize for Outstanding MFA Student, will give a lecture on Friday, May 5, at noon in Chazen Auditorium entitled “Gendered Physiognomies: Deconstructing Masculine and Feminine Appearances.”  

Woodland Indian Arts Festival

Haggerty Museum of Art

530 N. 13th St. 

In conjunction with “Look How Far We’ve Come!: Jeffrey Gibson” and “Lakota Voices: Collection Highlights from The Heritage Center at Red Cloud Indian School,” the Marquette University Haggerty Museum of Art is hosting the Woodland Indian Arts Festival on Saturday, April 29, noon-4:30 p.m. The free, family friendly festival features three musical performances by performers from the Menominee Nation and the Lake Superior Chippewa. There will be a hands-on workshop about the symbolic use of beads in wampum belt design at 12:30 p.m. and another hands-on workshop will be offered on the Oneida tradition of telling stories through pinch pots at 3:30 p.m. 

Tosa Pop Up Shop

Little Red Store

7720 Harwood Ave. 

Attention all offspring! Don’t forget that Mother’s Day is Sunday, May 14. Eight local, independent, female artists have got your back with handmade gifts guaranteed to make mom’s day. Wares for sale include small-batch cookies and granola, super-strong, super-small magnets upcycled from everyday things and garden art crafted from vintage glass, china and silver plate. The 2nd Annual Tosa Pop Up Shop takes place on Saturday, April 29, from 10 a.m.-3 p.m. at the Little Red Store in Wauwatosa. 


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