Sharon Mutch and Renate Klein at The Lost Soul

c. Sharon Mutch
c. Sharon Mutch

Sharon Mutch & Renate Klein
at The Lost Soul and Stranger Service Station
5 – 19 December 2009
Exhibition open: Wednesday to Saturday 13.00 – 17.00.

An interesting and thuoght-provoking exhibition, I like the way seats have been set out along the walls to look like a waiting room, above each one is some text which quotes women talking about their expereinces of IVF treatment.

For example the first one says…

There we sat, about seven or nine women.  At first we could not stand each other.
We felt like enemies.  We did not speak to each other, just exchanged hostile glances, because each of us wanted to be the first.  Each expected to be the one who was successful.  None wanted one of the others to start egg collection before her.

Once the women started to speak about themselves, the things that came out really required strong nerves.  I can understand that none of the doctors want to have anything to do with their private lives.  If they did, they probably could not do their job.  Professor T was rather cold, in public he acts as if he were a great benefactor until he gets his people.

The new works of manipulated photographs of figures on black backround printed on metalic paper are particulalry striking.

Feminae In Vitro Series One   c. Sharon Mutch
Feminae In Vitro Series One c. Sharon Mutch

In February 1969 the first papers outlining the plans for IVF (In vitro Fertilisation) were published, but it was another eleven years before Louise Brown was born in 1978. As IVF technology celebrates it’s 40th anniversary, artist, Sharon Mutch and social scientist and author, Dr Renate D. Klein have collaborated to produce an exhibition of image and text that reveals some of the forgotten stories of women from Europe, America and Australia who were involved in this developing technology.

Sharon Mutch is a visual artist based at the Bluecoat Studios in Liverpool. Sharon is also a facilitator and project manager of educational and community based projects. Her work seeks to investigate the cultural, medical and social experiences expressed by women when they have undergone new technologies through infertility, pregnancy and childbirth.  Exploring their lack of identity and voicelessness.

Dr Renate Klein, a biologist and social scientist, is a long-term health researcher and has written extensively on reproductive technologies and feminist theory. She is a former associate professor in Women’s Studies at Deakin University in Melbourne, a founder of FINRRAGE (Feminist International Network of Resistance to Reproductive and Genetic Engineering)