Gabriele Stötzer

(b. 1953, lives in Erfurt) is a visual artist working primarily with photography, film, painting, and performance; also an author of books, textiles, and ceramics. In the 1970s, Stötzer studied at a teacher-training college in Erfurt, which she was expelled from for political reasons. Active member of the opposition movement in the German Democratic Republic. She teaches a course on feminist art at the University of Erfurt.

Body Lines II, 1983, photography series
The Tail (Hanger), 1982/1983, photography series
The Tail (Plume), 1982, photography series
Untitled, 1985, photography series
Untitled, 1993, bedding set, duvet cover and two pillows, hand-painted silk
The Wand, 1995, ceramics
Courtesy of the artist and Monopol Gallery, Warsaw

The social status of women in the German Democratic Republic is a major topic in Stötzer’s work. The artist explores themes related to the body, the experience of pleasure through bodily and sexual practices. In many works, she touches upon the issue of searching for one’s cultural identity, as in a series of photographs originally titled Der Schwanz, where a model interprets the word, which means “tail,” but is also a slang term for the male organ, through attributes such as a plume of feathers or a clothes hanger. Through role-playing, cross-dressing, the game of covering and uncovering, Stötzer puts the female body in a privileged position, open to experiences. She also draws from a repertoire of ancient symbols and hieroglyphs, playing with the word and sign (the bedding set). The Wand, as a means of performing community magic, completes the presentation.


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