1994, 16mm film on DVD, color, silent
Curated by Abbe Schriber
The Out NYC
In The Color of Love, a found, discarded amateur porn film of two women and one man (who appears unconscious) forms the basis for Peggy Ahwesh's experimentation with cinematic gaze, sexuality, and mortality. In her hands a staged sexual experience becomes a macabre reflection on the desensitized consumption of sex and femininity in contemporary culture. Ahwesh further manipulated the already damaged, decomposing film surface with coloring treatments, optical printing, and other by-hand interventions. In this lurid, near-Surrealist optical space, Ahwesh displaces a voyeuristic film—emblematic of what later film theorists would deem the male gaze—into a 1990s feminist context.
Peggy Ahwesh came of age in the 1970s with Super 8mm amateur filmmaking, feminism and the punk underground in Pittsburgh, and received her BFA from Antioch College. Currently, Ahwesh is Professor of Film & Electronic Arts at Bard College. Ahwesh's films have been shown extensively nationally and internationally, at venues including the Museum of Modern Art, The Guggenheim Bilbao, the Whitney Museum of American Art, Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, San Francisco, and Museu d'Art Contemporani Barcelona. She has been awarded grants from the Jerome Foundation, Creative Capital, the Guggenheim Foundation and New York State Council on the Arts, and received an Alpert Award for the Arts.
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