Tuesday, November 17, 2009

The Fabulous Ms. Davis

I just got back from an incredible performance so I might be pushing this point a little far and perhaps making a connection where there isn't one, but in reading the Hooks article and spending the week with the performance artist Ms. Vaginal "Creme" Davis I've been thinking about representations of black women a lot. Hooks who is a black woman and Ms. Davis who often dresses like one, are both interested in sociological models and media representations of their respective associations. But while Hook's method is highly intellectual and highly confrontational, Davis' tends to be more subtle and subversive.

Rather than being critical of the racially-gendered issues Hook takes on with words, Davis has created a number of alter-egos (specifically for media outlets) which work to simultaneously acknowledge (i.e. Fertile LeToya Jackson) and defuse (i.e the fan, her "victorian" gestures) these heated issues. As a man (nearly 6'7') it's difficult to contextualize the scope of her critique, but as is often said of her "her penis doesn't make her any less of a woman"

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