The Four C’s
The Four C’s, 2007 / Edition of 20 / Dobbin Mill paper with archival inkjet printing /
Size: 12” x 6.5” x 0.5”
From the Pratt Institute Libraries Special Collections
The "Semper Tedium" series are albums of faux textile swatches, designed using multi-cultural proverbs about women. These texts were manipulated to create textile-weaving patterns and then printed on a variety of Dobbin Mill decorative papers. The pleasing aesthetic results are in striking contrast to the content of these saws.
Worldwide, the four main tasks associated with women are still the same, after 20,000 years. They could be summarized as the four C’s: Childcare (from nursing to rocking and all other forms of care), Cleaning (including sweeping, washing, etc.), Cookery (including all the preparations from fetching water, collecting firewood, herbs and other ingredients, to grinding, baking and so forth), & Crafts (spinning, weaving, needle work, knitting, etc.)
Grouped by themes of women’s work, “the multi-cultural proverbs explore perceptions about women globally. The artist book functions in few very interesting ways. It appears to be pages of fabric; but it is actually made of paper from Silverberg’s Dobbin Mill. The use of textual repetition allows for certain words—The women’s side of the house, women succeed, smart, kitchen, obey, stupid, housewife—to jump out at the reader. And because the textile swatches are layered rather than squarely placed on each other, the reader is able to see multiple layers and therefore experience contrasting ideas about women at the same time. The four groups of swatches are in pamphlets sewn onto a concertina spine, also overlapping each other. Silverberg is definitely navigating the territory of feminist art practice through both the connotations of domestic materials like fabric and her embrace of decoration that are visible in this very tactile work.” (- Karina Skvirsky, in “Multiple, limited Unique”, p. 114)