Collection 1940s–1970s

Carolee Schneemann. Four Fur Cutting Boards. 1962-63

Oil paint, umbrellas, motors, lightbulbs, string lights, photographs, fabric, lace, hubcaps, printed papers, mirror, nylon stockings, nails, hinges, and staples on wood, 90 1/2 × 131 × 52" (229.9 × 332.7 × 132.1 cm). The Jill and Peter Kraus Endowed Fund for Contemporary Acquisitions; The Riklis Collection of McCrory Corporation (by exchange); The Lillie P. Bliss Bequest (by exchange). © Estate of Carolee Schneemann. Courtesy of Galerie Lelong & Co., and P•P•O•W, New York.

Artist, Carolee Schneemann: It develops from found objects. It's a time when there are no grants for artists. There's no collectors. I'm working three jobs. And then I found this amazing fur loft.

So part of the motive for this work was that the artists just ahead of me, who influenced my work none of them had motorized their parts in the work. So I thought that's a territory that looks obvious that I can activate these materials.

Everything I know in terms of structure and materiality has to do with becoming an artist through painting without any support or approval. When I was in school, the professors would act as if a male spirit had inappropriately influenced my work. It wasn't appropriate for a girl, but it wasn't appropriate for a girl to think she could paint anyway. And the discouragement was so continual, as we know now, that I live what I call double knowledge: what I felt was true and could be life experience and then what the culture told me was absolutely not possible and had to be marginalized.