Our City Dreams (DVD Review)18 Jun, 2009 By: Angelique Flores
Five women artists of different ages, cultures and backgrounds end up in New York City, where they feel they need to be in order to make art.
This documentary draws a portrait of each of these artists and their art, which in most cases is ground-breaking and feminist.
Swoon built a name as a street artist and is getting used to having her work appear in prominent galleries. Ghada Amer, from Cairo, creates erotic art with needle and thread. Marina Abramovic is a pioneering performance artist from Serbia. Kiki Smith had her career’s worth of work on display as a retrospective showing at the Whitney Museum of Art. Nancy Spero, born in 1926, was a part of the feminist movement and still continues to create works that address sexual identity and war.
The film delves just deep enough to get a good feel from each of the artists, who are presented from youngest (Swoon) to oldest (Spero). And with each woman there’s more maturity and self-assuredness that shines through as they talk about their work, their lives as artists, their families and culture.
The film packaged these different women together because they all moved to New York to work. I expected to hear more about how New York has influenced their work and their lives as artists, but I didn’t get much of that.
However, as a portrait of talented women artists, this doc more than gets the job done. It’s a great inspiration for both the art and the feminist communities.