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Evelyne Axell, "The Great Journey Into Space"

Art & Design

Axell (1935–1972) is one of those semiforgotten European woman artists this gallery has made a specialty of reviving. A former actor and television presenter, Axell became one of Belgium’s first Pop artists. Tutored by René Magritte, Axell began to create vividly explicit paintings in the mid-1960s that delved into different aspects of female sexuality—connecting, as it were, the liberating effects of the pill and the women’s movement to larger themes in popular culture. This show, for example, focuses on Axell’s interest in the space age, and the erotic potential of the final frontier. Axell didn’t work for very long, as a fatal car crash cut short her career, but the works here reveal a unique aesthetic with a sexy sci-fi vibe.