I am interested in exploring themes of femininity, feminism and the roles of women in the military theater. In my travels to Israel, I became deeply sympathetic to the plight of women conscripted into military service. I imagined my daughter, who was the same age as these women, in a similar situation. In my own artwork, I view them both as young women who are aware of and seek to display their sexuality and vulnerability; yet, unlike my daughter, are also in a position of power, trained killers and placed in serious conflicts. I wonder what the consequences are in a society that must deal with this dichotomy.
The materials I utilize enabled me to integrate my vision of women and war with the way many feminist artists approached their work. Yarn woven through nails hammered into board is a technique I have discovered to be unique, yet suitable for the work I wish to create. The yarn is used to highlight portions of collaged images which I glue to the wood board, transforming the photograph into the generic soldier, no longer with distinct features. It also serves another function; unintended, yet certainly welcome. Feminist artists often utilized craft in their work to enhance their images, commenting on the status of “women’s work” and what had been thought of as acceptable pursuits for women in society. My own commentary that women soldiers must deal with a duality of self-image is reflected in the material of the yarn and its traditional connotation. - Beth Scher
About the Artist
Beth Scher was born in Brooklyn, New York. Growing up in the politically volatile 1970s, she was exposed to many of the multicultural issues that helped shape her unique art expression. Using a variety of mixed media, including yarn, nails, wood and collage, she attempts to evoke conversations about what roles women can and do play in the military, especially among those carrying weapons.
Ms. Scher graduated from the University of the Arts in Philadelphia with an MFA in Studio Art in December of 2013. Since then, she has appeared in many group shows and exhibitions in New York, Chicago, Virginia and Florida. She has been featured in the Arts and Culture Section of the July 23, 2014 issue of the Huffington Post and the October/November 2014 issue of Bust Magazine.
MFA Studio Arts, University of the Arts, Philadelphia, PA - 2013 ( click here to open link to thesis )
BA Studio Arts, University at Albany, Albany, New York - 2008
BA Communications, University at Albany, Albany, New York - 1980
School of Visual Arts, Painting Residency, New York, New York - 2014
Best in Show - "Angel in a Minefield" (mixed media on wood panel), Nathan D. Rosen Museum Gallery @the Levis JCC Sandler Center,Boca Raton, FL 2018
Judges Recognition - "Modern Soldier III"(mixed media on wood panel), NAWA@ The Armory Art Center, West Palm Beach, FL 2016
2nd Place - "Modern Soldier I"(mixed media on wood panel),NAWAFL Show @ Marco Island Center for the Arts,Marco Island, FL 2016
Fellowship Award-MFA Program in Studio Arts, University of the Arts, Philadelphia, PA - 2011-2013
Honorable Mention-Albany Center Galleries Member Show, “Israeli Female Soldier-Deconstructed” (Gouache on Paper) - 2010
Roanne Kulakoff Undergraduate Research Award in Painting, University at Albany, NY -2008