Spiral Woman

September 4, 2013


Louise Bourgeois, Spiral Woman

Louise Bourgeois, Spiral Woman

I’ve been thinking on this post for a long time. Louise Bourgeois is a phenomenal sculptor, and I highly recommend the documentary The Spider, the Mistress, and the Tangerine. (It is available on Hulu!) There is a great view of the Spiral Woman in motion.
For me, this piece represents what it can be like to be a human. She spins, looking for a place to rest. She is holding on; she isn’t struggling. The “twist” blinds her, supports her, controls her. We have to assume that she is not bothered.
The twist makes me think of a towel. The Spiral Woman is bathing. She is being taken from the water. She is not bothered. She just spins and spins, sucked up in the twist. She doesn’t call out to us. We cannot even see her face. Is she beautiful? Would she talk to us if she could? Does she wish the twist would just suck her up completely? Or is the spinning caused by her resistance?
I love the questions that Louise’s work brings up. I love the tension and the challenge. She makes you think.

Look. Listen. Respond.