Tuesday, February 28, 2017

charlotte moorman is known by most as "the topless cellist" after she was dragged off by police during her performance of her opera sextronique and she was convicted for public indecency. she was a badass avant-garde artist who changed the canon of both the music and art world forever. she used her body as a medium in the time of the second wave of feminism when many condemned her for exposing herself for the sake of a man's vision (nam june paik). however nam had little to do with it, or at least receives more credit than he should. charlotte explored ideas of revolutionizing music and television, and using it to reach as wide of an audience as possible. she appeared on nbc dressed as she is above, and prides herself on being the first to appear fully frontally nude on network tv. her legacy had an enormous impact on the art world, having been responsible for creating a site for avant-garde artists to meet and share and showcase their most experimental and chaotic works for the first time. all aspects of her were accessible to both artists and the public.

many criticized her as a young harlot from arkansas too eager to take her clothes off at the drop of a hat. however it's more than apparent that she was an avant-garde visionary artist. i'd say she was before her time, however i feel that she was exactly what the art world needed in that time. she embodies mcluhan's idea of the global village in her utilization of technology such as tv broadcasts and television sets, and the mediumship of her body both physical and politicized. her work created an impact that has lasted through time, despite having not physically produced a lasting body for it such as a painting or sculpture.


  1. I actually love this woman. Its so interesting to hear about the faces which were a part of the "global village" of the art community that were in the shadow of the men who overshadow them. Thanks for this.

  2. I thought it was so interesting that you said nam june paik gave her the credit she deserved but the media still presented her simply as his muse. that's shitty and not surprising. I'm glad you did this presentation It seemed like you set the record straight!