Confessional art reveals the inner landscape and processes through painting, sculpture and other forms. Louise Bourgeois is widely recognised as the progenitor of confessional art. It is almost impossible to truly interpret her work without reference to her biography. She offered a very literal symbolism that lent itself to explanations that were closer to psychoanalyses than art theory. This has led some people to wonder what the significance of her work will be when she has passed away and is no longer able to tie it into her personal history. She passed away in 2011 so now it is up to history to decide.
Louise Bourgeois was culturally recognised relatively late in life. It wasn’t until she was 70 years old that the Museum of Modern Art (MOMA) in New York held a retrospective of her work. They hosted a further exhibition in 2018 which brought together more than 300 of her pieces. It focused on her little known print work as much as any of the other media that she worked in. Louise had a well-defined creative process that MOMA allowed visitors to explore within the construction of this latest display.
Some of her famous pieces include: Femme Maison, Destruction of the Father and Cells. The latter was a voyeuristic, experiential piece where participants were invited to understand different types of pain and fear through the artist’s eyes and symbols.