American artist Ida Applebroog has died aged 93 in New York. Applebroog, who is survived by her four children and their families, was an integral figure in American feminist art, frequently translating classic motifs of male aggression into darkly humorous work.
Born to an orthodox Jewish family in the Bronx in 1929, Applebroog embraced an eclectic selection of mediums over six decades, creating sculptures, films, installations, paintings and drawings. She especially enjoyed working on skinlike Rhoplex- coated vellum, creating figures that were cartoonish in their simplicity.
She continued to embrace this alternative medium in the 1970s with artist books in the style of comic strips, in a nod to the prevailing popularity of the medium loved by the advertising industry at the time, before creating her first film with puppets, ‘It’s No Use Alberto’, which was shown at the Whitney Museum of American Art in 1978.
In 2009, Applebroog joined Hauser & Wirth, holding her first solo exhibition with them the following year in New York. Her most recent exhibition, ‘Ida Applebroog. Right Up To Now 1969 – 2021’ at Hauser & Wirth Somerset in 2022, presented new mixed media work alongside a comprehensive retrospective.
sSays Manuela Wirth, president Hauser & Wirth: ‘Ida has been a powerful force within the feminist movement since the 1970s, forging her own unique identity as an artist and woman, mother and wife. Relentless in her capacity for expansive visual experimentation, she interrogated themes of violence and power, human relations, her own body and domestic space. Her emotionally disruptive and fearless approach to making art has been an inspiration to many generations, intensely personal, honest and raw. We are eternally grateful for her humour, wit and radical introspection, presenting the absurdities of life as it is. Our thoughts are with Ida’s children and her extended family and friends at this time. She will be deeply missed by so many.’
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Hannah Silver is the Art, Culture, Watches & Jewellery Editor of Wallpaper*. Since joining in 2019, she has overseen offbeat design trends and in-depth profiles, and written extensively across the worlds of culture and luxury. She enjoys meeting artists and designers, viewing exhibitions and conducting interviews on her frequent travels.
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