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Phoebe Gloeckner is best known as the author of groundbreaking comics stories about young girls in early-1970s San Francisco. Her comics have appeared in legendary underground publications like Weirdo and Wimmen’s Comix as well as in book-length collections, drawing accolades from popular and scholarly audiences. During the last decade, Gloeckner has been experimenting with new content and new media, performing intensive research in and creating multimedia artworks about the border city of Ciudad Juárez, where, amidst larger waves of political, economic and drug-related violence, thousands of girls and women have been murdered or gone missing. Gloeckner will present portions of the new project, in which she recreates Juárez-based streetscapes, domestic spaces, crime scenes and prison cells in a series of scale-model environments populated by digitally manipulated dolls with which the viewer can interact. Gloeckner’s exploration of the relationship between fact and fiction, between digital and physical media, and between art and activism, represents an important response to the violence in Juárez, while raising questions about the role of artists in investigating politically charged issues.
Phoebe Gloeckner’s collection of comics A Child’s Life and Other Stories comprised a gathering of her earlier work and was followed by The Diary of a Teenage Girl. Gloeckner has produced illustrations and cover images for volumes in the RE/Search series (Angry Women,The Atrocity Exhibition and Dangerous Drawings) and for children’s books, including Weird Things You Can Grow. In 2003, Utne Reader listed Gloeckner among “Forty Artists Who Will Shake the World.” A medical illustrator as well as a writer and artist, Gloeckner provided drawings for Embryogenesis: Species, Gender, and Identity and for the third edition of The Good Vibrations Guide to Sex. Gloeckner is on the faculty of the School of Art and Design at the University of Michigan. She received a Guggenheim Fellowship in support of her Ciudad Juárez project.
Organized by Alice Gambrell (English).
Image: Phoebe Gloeckner