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Betty Wimmer

"vagina dentata"
Sculpture made of plaster cast
Betty Wimmer, 2020

The sculpture "vagina dentata" is a work by the Linz artist Betty Wimmer. The delicate object is the result of a wax impression of the artist's lips and teeth cast in plaster. In the final step, the finely worked cast, rotated by 90 degrees, becomes a toothed vulva, a "vagina dentata".
The "vagina dentata" (a term coined by Sigmund Freud) appears in many myths and legends and originates from the male fear of castration by a vagina with teeth. The background to this is the fear of female sexuality and self-determination.

Betty Wimmer takes an amused look at these castration fears in her work. In addition, the genesis of the work - the transition from her mouth to a vagina - alludes to etymological parallels: Lips/ labia, "hold the cunt", ... Self-determined female speech and sexuality are considered synonyms for female empowerment that are suppressed in patriarchal systems.


Betty Wimmer website