Posted by: Rajesh Shukla | August 7, 2010

Semiotics of the Kitchen


Semiotics of the Kitchen is a feminist parody video and performance piece released in 1975 by Martha Rosler. The video, which runs six minutes, is considered a critique of the commodified versions of traditional women’s roles in modern society.

From A to Z, Rosler “shows and tells” the ingredients of the housewife’s day, giving us a tour that names and mimics the ordinary with movements more samurai than suburban. Rosler’s slashing gesture as she forms the letters of the alphabet in the air with a knife and fork, is a rebel gesture, punching through the “system of harnessed subjectivity” from the inside out.

“I was concerned with something like the notion of Ôlanguage speaking the subject,’ and with the transformation of the woman herself into a sign in a system of signs that represent a system of food production, a system of harnessed subjectivity.”
—Martha Rosler

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Responses

  1. […] in the kitchen, A-Z: Art can be so strange. In 1975, Martha Rosler created this Semiotics of the Kitchen video where she (painstakingly) goes through items in the kitchen that start with every letter of the […]


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