Mierle Laderman Ukeles: Maintenance Art
The work of Mierle Laderman Ukeles brilliantly bridges feminism, environmentalism, and participatory art practice. Whether it’s her groundbreaking Manifesto for Maintenance Art 1969!, which decries the separation, especially for women, between art on the one hand and caring for family, city, and planet on the other; or The Social Mirror, in which she covered a New York City Department of Sanitation truck entirely in mirrored glass—Ukeles’s fascinating body of work includes public art installations, exhibitions, and performances around the world, frequently created in collaboration with sanitation and municipal workers, museum visitors, and the public. This first comprehensive book on the influential artist explores her legendary tenure as artist-in-residence at New York City’s Department of Sanitation, which has paved the way for similar “embedded artists” in government and community organizations. Essays, interviews, and striking illustrations offer important perspectives on an artist who has transformed our ideas about the feminist, urban, ecological, and resilient aspects of artistic experience.