Ruth Green-Cole is currently the Director of the Whangarei Art Museum. Previously she taught Art History and Design on the Bachelor of Applied Arts (Visual Arts) and the Diploma of Applied Arts (Digital Arts) at NorthTec, Whangarei, New Zealand.
Ruth has a Masters of Arts (1st Class) in Art History from the University of Auckland. This blog is a sampling of some of the artworks included in her thesis. Ruth’s thesis examined how menstruation and, more specifically, menstrual blood, is made visible and interpreted by contemporary artists. Visual analysis is centered on exploring how different art mediums such as painting and printmaking, photography and installation allow us to shape new understandings of and relationships to menstruation. They challenge or transgress the taboos around menstruation supported by various religious, social, scientific and mass media structures which have ultimately influenced women’s experiences of their own bodies and natural processes. Many social and cultural attitudes towards menstruation are intricately linked to the affective recognition of blood, which then becomes gendered and socially excluded as menstruation, but many cultural traditions add further negative values to such blood, associating it with pollution, abjection and inferiority. This may be because menstruation is normally and tacitly understood as destabilising the boundaries between inside and outside of the body, private and public, natural and reviled.
Ruth also has a Post-Graduate Diploma in Art History (Distinction) and a Bachelor of Fine Arts, majoring in Printmaking from Elam School of Fine Arts, at University of Auckland and a National Certificate in Tertiary Teaching and Learning.