Lounging In The Ladies

Lounging In The Ladies

Once upon a time, (i.e. in 2020) an Australian artist named Kirsha Kaechele designed an exhibit for the Tasmanian Museum of Old and New Art. It was called the Ladies Lounge. And —shock, horror—men were not allowed to enter. The title was ironic.

Once upon a time, (i.e. in 2020) an Australian artist named Kirsha Kaechele designed an exhibit for the Tasmanian Museum of Old and New Art. It was called the Ladies Lounge. And —shock, horror—men were not allowed to enter. The title was ironic. In my youth, the Ladies Lounge was the only part of pubs and bars where women were allowed to enter. The museum said “the artwork evokes in men the lived experience of women forbidden from entering certain spaces throughout history.”

This Ladies Lounge sported a couple of Picasso paintings on its walls.

Some men felt deprived. So a man sued the museum, citing gender discrimination. A judge sided with the complainant, calling the artwork ‘direct discrimination.’ Now the artist has decided to take the case to the Tasmanian Supreme Court. https://news.artnet.com/art-world/kirsha-kaechele-women-only-museum-exhibition-lawsuit-2456864

Pending the decision of the judges, Kaechele is pondering changes to the exhibit.

For example, she could bring in a toilet, and rename the Ladies Lounge the Ladies Room. The two Picassos would remain in the renamed space. Or, she could turn the Ladies Lounge into a church! On Sundays, men would be allowed into the space, she mused recently in an interview on the museum’s website. Women could bring in their clean laundry, and men would be taught in fold and iron it. (Currently, the museum is not open on Sundays.)

“Thanks to the ruling,” she noted, “we have no choice but to open ourselves to a whole range of enriching experiences—spiritual, educational… To discover fascinating new possibilities, and to become better.”

Can’t wait to see what she comes up with. In line with the museum’s mission of course. https://www.nytimes.com/2015/03/17/world/asia/mona-the-museum-of-old-and-new-art-proves-just-the-ticket-for-tasmania.html