Artist: Barbara Burns
Title: Fréo Ellenlic: Brave and Valiant Woman
Attribution: Fréo Ellenlic: Brave and Valiant Woman 2019, Barbara Burns
Materials: Handwoven Tapestry: wool and cotton weft, seine twine warp
Dimensions: 43 x 28.5 inches
Image Statement: Women have been “put in their place” since time immemorial. Every culture has their heroine who has broken this mold to take a stand and inhabit the space between oppression and freedom, pushing the boundaries of social and political expectations. Boudica, Beatrice of Portugal, Joan of Arc, Rosa Parks and Gloria Steinem, they all have this in common. My work is driven by my fascination with the human face and form. Often, I use my work to make a social or political statement. In the climate of Trump America, strong women have become the enemy, truth is a moving target and commitment is negotiable. In this world of information overload, a symbol can break through the clutter in a way that words cannot. Symbols are powerful, inspirational and often instantly recognizable. In Homage to Valiant Women you see a woman mounted on her horse, her bow string drawn, arrow nocked, ready to be let loose. She is timeless in an unidentified space. Seated on her horse, she moves through the temporal dimension. Her arrow points to the future. She is focused, resolute and allied with her mount. She is not any woman: she is all women. She is not just sitting on a horse, she is mounted upon her bridled power. She is focused and heroic. When the arrow strikes the target the score is irrefutable and true.