Course. The feminist gaze 2021

From: Saturday, 14 November 2020

To: Sunday, 15 November 2020

Feminist perspectives in artistic productions and theories of art

Artium Museum is organising the 12th edition of the course entitled Feminist Perspectives in Artistic Productions and Theories of Art. Directed by Xabier Arakistain, art curator, and Lourdes Méndez, senior lecturer in Anthropology of Art at the Basque Public University (UPV/EHU), this annual course brings together speakers from various countries, disciplines and generations to analyse or intervene in the field of art from feminist perspectives.

Aiming to denounce and fight against discrimination, oppression and exploitation of women, these perspectives maintain that the category of sex structures the social, the gaze, language, art, its field and its institutions by combining aesthetic and political dimensions. Feminist perspectives also analyse male and female artists within the social relationship framework of sex, ethnicity and class existing in societies in which they live and, in doing so, reveal the reasons for the unequal recognition achieved by female artists and their works in the field of art.

The course provides an overview to a broad audience of the main contributions of feminist artists and art theorists by focusing on the theoretical and political issues that need to be addressed today in order to continue developing and disseminating art and knowledge that are free from androcentric and ethnocentric biases.

Saturday 17 and Sunday 18 April

Free entry until full capacity is reached.
You have to register
beforehand to attend by sending an email to and providing your full name and contact telephone number.

Those wishing to attend virtually can do so via live streaming. The corresponding link will be
provided when they register.

Brochure of the course 


Saturday, 17 april

10.30 am. Handing out of material- Presentation of the course (Xabier Arakistain and Lourdes Méndez) and Documentation Centre (Beatriz Herráez and Elena Roseras)

11 am. Opening talk: Anna Caballé. Writer, Lecturer of Spanish Literature at the University of Barcelona, President of the Clásicas y Modernas association

12.30 pm. Break

1 pm. Talk by: Gema Intxausti. Artist, author of the Artium exhibition Among a Crowd, Watching an Arrest

2.30 pm. Break

4.30 pm. talk by: Garazi Ansa and Haizea Barcenilla. Art historians, EHU / UPV

6 pm. Break

6.30. Talk by Erreakzioa. Group formed by the artists Estibaliz Sádaba and Azucena Vieites

8 pm. End of the day

Sunday, 18 april

10 am. Talk by Carmen Gaitán Salinas. Art historian. Complutense University of Madrid

11.30 am. Break

12 pm. talk by Lara Perry. Historian, School of Humanities, University of Brighton

1.30 pm. Break

3.30 pm. Closing talk: Mari Chordà. Multidisciplinary artist

5 pm. End of the course

Lourdes Méndez

Lourdes Méndez is Chair of Anthropology of Art at the University of the Basque Country. She studied Anthropology at the University of Paris VIII. After completing her PhD, she became a lecturer in the Faculty of Fine Arts of the University of the Basque Country, where she has been Vice-dean of Doctorate Studies and Research (1987-1989) and Vice-dean of International Relations (2004-2009). Her lines of research cover analysis of the field of visual arts from the perspective of materialistic feminism; the problems derived from the design and application of cultural policies at a local and EU level; and the consequences of institutional policies based on the assumption of the so-called “gender perspective” on feminist research. Lourdes Méndez has written many books and articles. Among the most recent we could highlight: Galicia en Europa. El lugar de las artes plásticas en la política cultural de la Xunta (2002), “Una connivencia implícita: perspectiva de género, empoderamiento y feminismo institucional” (2005), Antropología feminista (2007), Antropología del campo artístico: Del arte primitivo [...] al contemporáneo (2009), “Ellos, ‘artistas’ a secas; Ellas, ‘mujeres artistas’; que no es lo mismo” (2012), “Feminismos en movimiento en el Estado español. ¿Re-ampliando el espacio de lo politico?” (2014) and From The Trap of Difference to That of Excellence: The Women Artists, Their Works and The Artistic Field (2014), “Exclusionary Genealogies” (2016), “Mujeres, LGTBI, Queers y + : sujetos políticos emergentes y ontología naturalista” (2017). “Una posición de dentro, pero fuera: las artistas y sus obras en el campo del arte” (2018) and Siete claves para una introducción a la antropología (2019).

Xabier Arakistain

Xabier Arakistain (Madrid, 1966) is an art curator who has been including the category of sex as a curatorial criterion ever since his first exhibition, Trans Sexual Express. He has curated retrospectives dedicated to key artists of Feminist Art such as Margaret Harrison, Judy Chicago or Guerrilla Girls and also group exhibitions such as The Furious Gaze, Kick in the Eye, Eight Feminist Strategies to Interrupt the Male Gaze or Kiss Kiss Bang Bang, 86 Steps in 45 Years of Art and Feminism. In 2008, concerned about the barriers to transmitting feminist knowledge, he jointly launched with the anthropologist Lourdes Méndez the annual interdisciplinary, international and intergenerational course Feminist Perspectives in Artistic Productions and Theories of Art. Between 2007 and 2011, he managed the Montehermoso Cultural Centre with a pioneering project in developing and implementing gender equality policies in the fields of contemporary art, thought and culture.

Anna Caballé

Anna Caballé Masforroll is a writer, lecturer of Spanish Literature at the University of Barcelona, head of her Biographical Studies Unit and literary critic. She has been a guest lecturer at various universities. She was a Tinker Visiting Professor at the University of Chicago in 2016. She has published La vida y la obra de Paulino Masip (1987), Narcisos de tinta. Ensayo sobre la literatura autobiográfica en lengua castellana (1939-1975) (1995), Mi vida es mía (2000, in collaboration with Joana Bonet), Francisco Umbral. El frío de una vida (2004), Cinco conversaciones con Carlos Castilla del Pino (2005), Una breve historia de la misoginia (2006, 2019), Carmen Laforet. Una mujer en fuga (2010, 2019, Gaziel Prize for Biographies and Memoirs), El feminismo en España. La lenta conquista de un derecho (2013) and Pasé la mañana escribiendo. Poéticas del diarismo español (2014, Manuel Alvar de Humanidades Prize). Her most recent books include Concepción Arenal. La caminante y su sombra (2018, National History Prize 2019) and Víctor Català. El poder de lo real (2019). She is vice-president of the Tom Sharpe Foundation, president of the Clásicas y Modernas association, which defends gender equality in culture, and honorary president of the Biography Society.

Gema Intxausti

Gema Intxausti is an artist with a specialist degree in sculpture from the Faculty of Fine Arts in Leioa, from which she later obtained a diploma of advanced studies (DEA by its Spanish acronym). She studied filmmaking in England at the UCA (University for the Creative Arts) in Farnham and screenwriting with Alain García at the Film School of the Basque Country in Bilbao. Some of her solo exhibitions include Entre la multitud observando el arresto (Among a Crowd, Watching an Arrest, 2020), curated by Beatriz Herráez and Xabier Arakistain at Artium, Basque Museum-Centre of Contemporary Art; Parallel Boulevard (2019) at Galería La Taller in Bilbao; Macabea, la rutina diaria de la oficina (Macabéa, the Daily Office Routine, 2016) at Galería CarrerasMúgica in Bilbao, and Wilder is the New Black (2014) at Galería la Taller in Bilbao. Some of the group exhibitions in which she has participated include Cibernética del pobre. Tutoriales, partituras y ejercicios (Cybernetics of the Poor: Tutorials, Exercises and Scores, 2020), curated by Diedrich Diederichsen and Oier Etxeberria at Tabakalera in San Sebastián; Zeru bat, Hamaika Bide. Prácticas artísticas en el País Vasco entre 1977 y 2002 (Zeru bat, Hamaika Bide: Artistic Practices in the Basque Country in the Period 1977-2002, 2020) at Artium, Basque Museum-Centre of Contemporary Art; Después del 68 (After ‘68, 2018-2019) at the Museum of Fine Arts in Bilbao, and Tratado de Paz (Peace Treaty, (2016) at the San Telmo Museum in San Sebastián. She was recently a lecturer in the Sculpture Department of the Faculty of Fine Arts in Leioa and at DigiPen, Institute of Technology Europe-Bilbao between 2014 and 2018. She has published Her Majesty Sylvia M. and Notas sobre el ritual de la serpiente de Aby Warburg (Notes on Aby Warburg's Serpent Ritual) as part of the Políticas del Humo (Smoke Politics) programme, curated by Oier Etxeberria, both in Tabakalera. She received several plastic arts grants from the Basque Government between 2001 and 2017 and was awarded the Gure Artea prize for her career in 2018. Her work forms part of the Artium Museum and Fundación Caja Vital in Vitoria-Gasteiz and the Museum of Fine Arts in Bilbao, among other centres.

Garazi Ansa

Garazi Ansa (Oiartzun, 1989) has a PhD in Art History from the University of the Basque Country and previously completed an MA in New Resources for Art Curatorship at Ramón Llull University. She currently lectures in the Department of Art History and Music at the University of the Basque Country and her main field of research is in the area of curating and exhibitions, in  which she analyses from a gender perspective the resources –for example archives– used by these systems to elaborate discourses, as well as their characteristics. Alongside the capacity of exhibition systems to write Art History, she also deals with the critical review of Art Historiography and is currently analysing the context of the 1980s in the Basque Country with the help of a grant from the Bilbao Fine Arts Museum. She has also curated several exhibitions, the latest of which includes Hemen dira hutsunean igeri egindakoak Tururu (Azkuna Zentroa in 2019 and Artium in 2020) and Festa Pagana (Elche, 2020), the latter together with Haizea Barcenilla. She has been an art critic for the newspaper Berria since 2012.

Haizea Barcenilla

Haizea Barcenilla has an MA in Curating from Goldsmiths College, London, and a PhD in Art History and is Associate Professor in the Department of Art and Music History at the University of the Basque Country. She has completed research visits at Konstfack University, Stockholm, and Keio University, Tokyo. Her lines of research focus on the politics of making art visible, paying special attention to gender perspectives. The exhibition format in its broadest conception is her main field of work, questioning which discourses are constructed through this form of communicating works of art and how historical narratives are constructed through these. Within this line of research, she has paid special attention to women of the artistic avant-garde and to the possibilities of new approaches within the field of curating through the ideas of the common public, as well as intersecting with feminist economics. Among other curatorial projects, she was responsible for the project Nuevos Comanditarios (New Patrons), for which she produced the works Manual de uso by Andrea Acosta and Andrekale by Señora Polaroiska. She writes cultural criticism for the newspaper Berria and is a contributor to Euskadi Irratia’s Amarauna programme.


Erreakzioa arose as a space for creating context and disseminating feminist thought in art from an initiative in the Basque Country in 1994 by the artists Estibaliz Sádaba and Azucena Vieites. Their work includes the publication of ten fanzines (1994-2000) and directing the following seminars for Arteleku: Sólo para tus ojos. El factor feminista en relación a las artes visuales (For Your Eyes Only: The Feminist Factor in Relation with the Visual Arts, 1997); La repolitización del espacio sexual (The Repoliticisation of Sexual Space, 2004), with María José Belbel; and Mutaciones del feminismo (Mutations of Feminism, 2005), with María José Belbel and Paul B. Preciado. In 2008, they directed La feminidad problematizada (Problematised Femininity, Montehermoso Cultural Centre, Vitoria-Gasteiz) and ¡Aquí y ahora! Nuevas formas de acción feminista (Here and Now! New Forms of Feminist Action, El Gabinete Abstracto, Sala Rekalde, Bilbao). In 2009, they participated in the National Feminist Seminars in Granada. In 2011, they organised the exhibition project Edición Múltiple (Multiple Edition) for Bizbak, EHU/UPV. Their work has been displayed in museums such as the Louisiana Museum of Modern Art (Humlebaek, Denmark) and they have collaborated in projects such as Grassroots Feminism, concerning transnational archives, resources and feminist communities.

Carmen Gaitán Salinas

Carmen Gaitán Salinas has a PhD in Contemporary History from the Complutense University of Madrid and completed her doctoral thesis at the Spanish National Research Council (CSIC). She also holds a master’s degree in Contemporary Art and Visual Culture History (UCM, UAM and MNCARS) and one in Social Development of Artistic Culture (UMA). She has a degree in Art History (UMA) and a higher degree in Piano Music (Malagá Conservatory of Music). She is currently the beneficiary of a Juan de la Cierva incorporation grant contract in the Art History Department at the UCM. She has published Las artistas del exilio republicano español. El refugio latinoamericano (Cátedra, 2019) and the critical edition of Victorina Durán’s memoirs, alongside Idoia Murga Castro (Mi vida, Residencia de Estudiantes, 2018, 3 volumes). She has also edited Manuela Ballester’s diaries and these will soon be published by Renacimiento. She has received many grants, scholarships and competition subsidies. She was a resident at the Residencia de Estudiantes in Madrid and has completed research visits at the University of Exeter (England, 2014), El Colegio de México (Mexico, 2015), Universidad Nacional Tres de Febrero (Argentina, 2016), National Gallery of Art (Washington DC, 2019) and New York University (as visiting scholar, New York, 2019-2020). She has written scientific articles for relevant publications and has been invited to many national and international congresses, courses and conferences. She has also lectured at the University of Pennsylvania and Villanova University and taught classes at the UCM and CSIC.

Lara Perry

Lara Perry is the Deputy Head for Learning and Teaching in the School of Humanities, University of Brighton, UK. Trained first as a historian on the traditional, ancestral, and unceded territory of the Musqueam people, Lara’s career has so far involved her in work with artists, curators, photographers, educators, computer scientists, philosophers, archivists, activists and art historians. Her research on the history of the National Portrait Gallery’s (London) collection was published as History’s Beauties: Women, History and the National Portrait Gallery 1856-1900 in 2006. Other publications include an edited volume with Angela Dimitrakaki, Politics in Glass Case: Feminism, exhibition cultures and curatorial transgressions (Liverpool University Press, 2013); Issue 29 of OnCurating, “Curating in Feminist Thought” (2016) edited with Dorothee Richter and Elke Krasny and recently, “Unsettling Gender, Sexuality and Race: ‘Crossing’ the Collecting, Classifying and Spectacularising Mechanism of the Museum”, with Elke Krasny, MUSEUM International, 2020. Lara is currently working on an AHRC-funded project exploring the digital reach of civic museums and forging educational practices that make sense in the present of a complex and conflicted past.

Mari Chordà

Mari Chordà, a multidisciplinary and radically feminist artist, was born in 1942 in Amposta, Catalonia. She is a poet, painter, sculptor, photographer and sociocultural activist intimately linked to political and feminist struggles. She was part of an ongoing resistance during the late Francoist period that led to the women’s liberation movement of Catalonia in the 1970s. In 1968, she set up a cultural centre in her home town, lo Llar, to fight for sociopolitical demands. She has had a firm vocation for collective work ever since her youth and the following projects emerged from this: laSal Bar Biblioteca Feminista and laSal Edicions de les Dones, the first feminist publishing house in Spain as well as a meeting point and setting for various artistic proposals in Barcelona. Together, they also created and promoted the Agenda de les Dones between 1978-1990 and later, with Conxa Llinàs, they reinterpreted this under the name Agenda de les Pumes from 1996 to 2009. She has been a pioneer in feminist representations of female sexuality and motherhood, breaking with the androcentric and patriarchal heritage of these artistic typologies. She was also the first woman artist to depict the vagina pictorially in 1964.

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