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Pink

ID Number: 10154
Maker: Sheila Levrant de Bretteville; A Women's Community, Inc.
Technique: offset
Date Made: 1974
Place Made: United States: California, Los Angeles
Measurements: 66 cm x 50.7 cm; 26 in x 19 15/16 in
Main Subject: Women; Viet Nam War Era
Materials: glossy paper (fiber product)
Digitized: Y

Full Text:
A Woman's Community, Inc. edition / © 1974 Sheila Levrant de Bretteville Far back into my memory pink has been so, so, so soft and vulnerable and intimate and vulnerable and intimate and soft... no, no, no, not me! This year I am working daily in a personal and stable environment of women artists and becoming less defensive. I am beginning to see those aspects of me that are soft and vulnerable and intimate and beginning to say yes, yes, yes me! [illegible] [...] When I was a little girl I was dressed up in pink dresses & my room was pink and so I learned that dirt really shows up on pink! A glob of red. Swirls of white. I am twelve and mixing flesh color for my paper maché puppet heads. I wonder why "pink" is not called "red-white", the way "blue-green" is called "blue-green." I paint my heads. They look silly. Pink is not flesh color. I need brown and orange and yellow. At twelve, pink was a pigment problem. Why do I react now when I hear my son say pink is his favorite color? There is that moment before I smile and say, "Oh, is it," that I wish he'd chosen chartreuse or burnt sienna. At thirty-one, pink contains no pigment, only psycho-social ramifications. I think pink is a pretty color. Pink is not for boys because they wear, like, dark colors. I think pink is a pretty color for babies because it makes the baby look gentle and cuddly Pink is pretty for spring and summer. I don't like pink because it gets dirty fast, and stained it gets dirty faster than most colors On a girl pink looks dainty, and on a boy it looks faggy. Sara, 13 - Rhena, 14 - Edith, 15 - Evelyn, 13 Pink is the color my mother wished for me, thinking it sweet, thinking it pure, thinking it all things not violent or cruel. She did not notice, hidden in the heart of the sweetheart roses, the seed of blood deepening into crimson. In the blink of an eye we pass through the spectrum, shedding colors and images. No destination is possible: there is only the movement from one point to another; there is only the journey. And no time is wasted, no time is lost. We are all those moments, even that time long ago when we were our mother's daughters, pink pearls. When I was a kid I shared a room with my sister and my mother painted all the walls pink, and put the same color pink bedspreads on our beds and on the windows, she put pink curtains. At that same time she had a baby a girl... My sister and I got moved out and the baby got the pink room. Edie Hopkins Pink is the color of hair rollers and the tape which holds hair in place. This is the pink that is assigned to little girls and is for an all that I wanted to be and was not - sweet, proper, nice and obedient. Ned yells and screams for attention; it is too much. I want attention, but... Being neither a sweet little thing nor a ravishing trollop, neither pink nor red has pertained to me. I am embarrassed that I never tried to be the pink I was supposed to be. Seeing myself frowning from beneath a head full of pink rollers, my dark hair never calmly, sweetly, obediently wrapping itself Pink is a color which I felt had nothing to do with me. I've never felt I could be pink or [...] 'in the pink'. As a little girl I was pale not pink-cheeked pale - and I frowned and was called 'pickle-face' I have [...] right in pink - as a girl I preferred grey, as a young woman, black. Now , I prefer the gentle off-colors! Celedon green and pink/peach. This yellowed pink is lightly old looking, experienced, even used...It is more subtle than baby pink, has more confused connotations - somewhat thirties. I like the lack of clarity in such a peachy pink - it doesn't mean as many specific things as baby pink. Scratch pink and it bleeds Little girls don't know why, but little girls are pink. Pink is my Anne --Renoir rosy, Cassatt bright...from birth a pink glow of health, happiness and heart has walked with this child...now an eleven year old young woman, she has embraced that rose glow and made it hers...


Acquisition Number: 1991-053

Notes:
Sheila Levrant de Bretteville created a poster/wallwork titled Pink; she handed out pieces of pink paper to friends and to women on the street, asking them to describe what this color, somewhat maligned for its associations with femininity, meant to them. She assembled the results on a poster in a quilt-like format, including blank spaces for audience response. De Bretteville, a mother and wife as well as a noted graphic designer, remarked that the visual structure also expressed “the way I felt my day was broken up into three-hour segments, as much as its form was influenced by notions of de-centering, and the revaluing of women’s work, such as quilting.”


Copyright Status:
Under copyright; used by CSPG with permission.



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