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  • KC Pruitt

How are gender differences depicted in art?

To be more specific, how are gender differences between male and female depicted in art? Think of stereotypes and preconceived notions, do you think they are valid?

Gender differences are represented by symbolism, sex, anatomy, roles and the artist's intent. Throughout history, until recently when sex can be determined prior to birth, as soon as a baby was born, teaching gender roles began. This teaching is about preconceived notions as to how one should act. Are they valid if one considers hormones? Are they valid if a single parent is of a different sex and teaches differently as to how one should act? Everyone is different, they may be similar but different. My mother could always beat me playing basketball. My father is a disabled WWII vet and was not always physically able to teach me some things. Are they valid? That depends on the artist's viewpoint. It may be valid to the artist but not everyone will share the artist's view. Some may and some may not. Compare gender to race. Everyone is physically male or female at birth no matter what gender they identify with. Likewise, everyone is mixed race no matter what race they identify with. One fact is sure, controversy has surrounded gender and will continue. Politicians feel the need to pass laws that include gender. In Texas there is a push to make it a law that people must use the restroom that matches their birth certificate. This has led to the creation of several images for restroom signage. The art of signs related to gender is meant to be funny, but some find them offensive. The problem could be solved by passing laws that public restrooms be genderless.That has been speculated by cartoonist who have produced a new round of wordless graphic art. Imagine for a moment, while shopping in a crowded store, the urge to go hits and you forgot your birth certificate.

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