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- Posted on Feb 4th 2011 4:00PM by Brian Voerding
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The Cleveland museum's exhibit, "Women Who Rock: Vision, Passion, Power," will showcase a century of women in music, spotlighting more than 60 artists ranging from Billie Holiday to Brenda Lee, Janis Joplin to Patti Smith, Lady Gaga and Taylor Swift, '20s cabaret singers to '90s Lilith Fair headliners.
The two-floor interactive exhibit will take visitors through a century of women musicians, beginning with turn-of-the-century blues singers and ending in the modern age. It focuses on a number of genres and the ways female artists explored, fought for and celebrated the social movements of their times, from women's suffrage to defining feminism. There will be plenty of artifacts, written histories, listening stations, videos and more. The opening of the exhibit will be celebrated with a concert featuring Wanda Jackson, Cyndi Lauper and more artists to be named.
The exhibit makes no claims of being comprehensive; rather, it offers a wide and diverse look at key female performers who created and expanded women's roles over the last hundred-odd years of popular music.
"There is no one linear argument to be made about what or who women were or are -- it changes all the time," Lauren Onkey, the museum's vice president of education and public programs, told the Los Angeles Times. "It's a big story to grapple with and it's not just one story."
The exhibit opens May 13 and runs through February of next year.
The museum will open the first of several related exhibits on Feb. 14, called "Girls on Film: 40 Years of Women in Rock." The exhibit consists of photos taken by Cleveland-based photographer and writer Anastasia Pantsios, and features shots of iconic female singers who toured through the Midwest over the decades, including Grace Slick, Joan Jett and Tina Turner.
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