Guerrilla Girls are an anonymous group of female artists that use brandalism to fight sexism and racism within the art world. They formed in 1985 and their members are known for the snarling gorilla masks they wear to remain anonymous.
“…anonymous do-gooders like Robin Hood, Wonder Woman and Batman. We expose sexism, racism and corruption in politics, art, film and pop culture using facts, humor and outrageous visuals. We reveal the understory, the subtext, the overlooked, the and the downright unfair.”
Apart of what the Guerrilla Girls do is create posters, stickers, billboards and artwork. When the Guerrilla Girls were first formed they started to conduct “weenie counts,” where members would go to museums and count the male to female subject ratio in artworks.
The data gathered from the Metropolitan Museum of Art(or the Met)’s public collections in 1989 showed that in the Modern Art sections less than 5% of the works were by female artists, while 85% of the nudes were female. Where the statistics for this design was born.
The original image that the Guerrilla Girls have brandalised is a painting called Grande Odalisque by Jean Auguste Dominique Ingres painted in 1814. The woman in this oil painting lies naked on a bed and looks seductively out from the canvas. Some argue that the fan, head wrap, fabrics and pipe add a element of exoticism to the image. To brandalise this painting the Guerrilla Girls have replaced the romanticised face with a gorilla head, which is the symbol of their cause.
They have since created more designs to say cover more mediums.