Body Language: A Feminist-Informed Analysis of Visitor’s Narrative Responses to THIN

By Laura Evans.

Published by The International Journal of the Inclusive Museum

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

This case study examines “THIN” - an exhibition of photography by artist, Lauren Greenfield - at two university art museums from 2009-2011. “THIN” documents the lives of female patients at an eating disorder recovery facility and, through the exhibit’s portrayal of these women and their struggles, it deals with issues of gender and systems of power that contribute to and encourage eating disorders. Through visitor’s writings about the exhibit, observations at museum sites, and feminist-informed theory, I examine how “THIN” and museum educators challenge visitors to think about oppression, power dynamics, and privilege through the exhibition and education. In conclusion, I provide examples of how museum educators might create programming that would compliment the exhibition, encourage the examination of the dominant ideologies regarding eating disorders, and further education around the social issue of eating disorders.

Keywords: Museum Education, Feminist-Informed Research, Eating Disorders

The International Journal of the Inclusive Museum, Volume 6, Issue 1, pp.121-130. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 336.824KB).

Dr. Laura Evans

Assistant Professor; Director of Art Museum Education Certificate, The Department of Art Education and Art History, The University of North Texas, Denton, TX, USA

Laura Evans is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Art Education and Art History and Director of the Art Museum Education Certificate at the University of North Texas. Evans received her PhD at The Ohio State University in Art Education, a Master’s in Museum Studies at the University of Toronto, and a Bachelor’s in Art History at Denison University. Her research interests are in the intersections between art museum education, gender, and empowerment. Previous to her PhD, Evans was a year-long fellow at the National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC in the Department of Education. She has also interned or worked at the Museum of Contemporary art in Chicago, the Lodell Gallery in New Zealand, the Columbus Museum of Art, the Wexner Center for Contemporary Art, the Ringling Museum of Art in Sarasota, Florida, the Denison Museum of Denison University, and the University Art Centre at the University of Toronto.

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