Sculpture has always been one of the macho arts. When I was in school, women weren't even allowed on the foundry crew. Too difficult for the "little ladies." (That was changed by a group of determined women sculptors who proved they could do the work.)
What hasn't changed much is the genre of female nudes... aka Bronze Barbies. Guy's love to make them.
It's always the hot babe.
My dislike of this genre stems from the fact that rarely do the Bronze Barbies portray an individual woman. (Obsession I can understand. Look at the work of Gaston Lachaise. )
The sculpture I'm talking about idealizes features to the point of being generic. It's pretty and it sells.
The breasts are always perfectly pert or gravity defying DDD's. Women know that breasts come in a myriad of shapes and sizes. Don't male sculptors know this? Why do the bronze breasts and bodies all look alike?
The Bronze Barbies never portray any of the stages of a woman's life. (Barbie is over 50!)
Spend some time with 'Celle qui fut la belle heaulmière' (the Helmet maker's once beautiful wife) to see what Rodin could do with an older model. The sculpture isn't pretty. It's life. It's Art.
Writer Isabel Allende speaks passionately for women and Feminism in this TED video.
"What I fear most is Power with impunity. I fear abuse of power and the power to abuse."
Images of "sexy" women bought and sold are so woven into our global culture, so pervasive that we don't really see how odd it is. The next time you see a bronze nude of a woman, let yourself really Look and See the work. Ask youself: "How true is this sculpture?" or better "What story is this telling? ............What is this selling?"