13.3% is an exasperated response to those who say . . .
Jane Austen spoke, with witty, self-deprecating understatement, of a metaphorical “little bit (two inches wide) of ivory” as the canvas for her efforts; her intellectual heir, Virginia Woolf, was willing to lay claim to an entire room as the space in which women’s writing took place. 13.3%, which focuses on female architects, asks what it will take before the imagination of women expands to fill the space of entire city blocks. With Austenian humor and with unveiled irony, the contributors to this conceptual exhibit about women’s architecture make needlepoint blueprints, replicate bricks out of fabric shreds, or take the pants (literally) off the Pritzker prizewinners.
Just over thirteen percent of architects are women, according to the American Institute of Architects. The exhibition 13.3%… borrows from the conceptual structure of curator Lucy Lippard’s landmark 1973 exhibition of conceptual art, c. 7,500, in which each work on display fit into a standard manila envelope. Lippard’s exhibition contested the belief that there were no women making conceptual art at the time — and she did so by mailing evidence of this work directly to the gallery for display. Nearly forty years later, 13.3%… provides a space and form in which to consider the contributions and visibility of today’s practicing female architects.
Project: Exhibition on gender and architecture, co-organized with Jayna Zweiman
Location: WUHO Gallery, Los Angeles, California, USA (December 2010-April 2011)