Another History of Women Doctors
watercolour on paper, framed
23 x 16 cm
unique, signed by the artist
about this work
Laurie Charles depicts a world that looks different from the one we know today. Charles tells these stories through both image and language, and from a feminist perspective. Rewriting history from a female point of view is a major theme in Laurie Charles’ work. As is a focus on caring for each other. Laurie Charles herself suffers from an autoimmune disease. Perhaps this is precisely why the body and her social approach are so central to her work.
The watercolours in this series consist of reworkings of medieval engravings depicting the history of medicine. Laurie Charles broadly retains the compositions but populates the prints with women. The watercolours tell of the utopian idea of a closed community of women, but also of the historical position of women, who – especially outside the city – relied on themselves and nature to overcome disease. The works rewrite the story of independent women who were marginalised by patriarchy and accused of witchcraft. We see women providing care and healing advice, always in relation to each other – no one is depicted alone.
about Laurie Charles
Laurie Charles is a visual and textual storyteller, she writes and paints speculative narratives on large canvases. Her artistic practice is multi-faceted, and has always been collaborative, responsive, socially engaged and choreographically conscious. She demonstrates a holistic approach to her work, consolidating and collapsing multiple fields to allow her to engage with a variety of ideas, disciplines, publics, and techniques across her productions.
She makes films in which she interweaves folklore, humanities, stories and historical narratives within a feminist perspective. For the artist, each project is an opportunity for in-depth research in which she brings together scattered elements in a fictional story and the outcome of this story is the resulting work.
Drawing deeply from her own personal experience with an autoimmune disease, Charles creates large-scale fabric pieces and soft furnishings that respond to ideas around the body through a macro lens. She undertakes to rewrite an alternative history of medicine to the one which has been engraved, where care, cycles, ecological disaster, and healing take precedence. She thinks of embodiment, fictional and non-human bodies, empathy and visualisation. She creates multiple objects that act as images in the traditional sense, but also as thresholds (curtains), bodily comforts (cushions), and stage props for storytelling in an exhibition scenario.
Laurie Charles shows her work internationally, including at Terzo Fronte, Roma; Wiels, Brussels; Efremidis Gallery, Berlin; Grazer Kunstverein, Graz; CIAP Kunstverein, Hasselt; 1646 – project space for contemporary art, The Hague; Nanjing International Art Festival; Beursschouwburg, Brussel; and Le Commissariat – Paris.
You can discover more of Laurie Charles’ work on her own website.more...