Terracotta Daughters by Prune Nourry

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In “Terracotta Daughters,” artist Prune Nourry responds to sexist gender selection in China by reimagining the terracotta soldiers of Xi’an, China as an army of girls. Nourry made the eight original models herself, designing them in the image of orphans she met through the non-profit The Children of Madaifu and designating the sale of these pieces to go toward the girls’ education. Using Nourry’s models in various combinations, artisans crafted the rest of the 108-sculpture army. One of the craftsmen, Xian Feng, signed and painted the face of each replica.

The “Terracotta Daughters” will show at FLUX Laboratory in Zürich from Friday, June 13-July 11, 2014, and the opening night begins at 6:00 pm with a “culinary performance” inspired the archaeology and catered by Gianni Segantini’s kitchen. After the exhibition tour comes to its close, the “Terracotta Daughters” will be buried on their home turf. Then, in 2030, the year in which China’s gender imbalance is expected to peak, the girls will be excavated and, perhaps, shown again.

Photography by Zachary Bako



Holly is a poet from Kentucky. She grew up first in a Sears house, then on a farm. She studied English and Gender Studies at Mount Holyoke College and moved to Manhattan for love. As an occasional jewelry-maker and museum patron, Holly favors wearable and functional design but is eager to see work that challenges her aesthetics. Read more and connect by visiting her blog, Twitter, and LinkedIn.

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