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The Work of Art in the Age of Deindustrialization$
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Jasper Bernes

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780804796415

Published to Stanford Scholarship Online: January 2018

DOI: 10.11126/stanford/9780804796415.001.0001

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The Feminization of Speedup

The Feminization of Speedup

(p.120) 4 The Feminization of Speedup
The Work of Art in the Age of Deindustrialization

Jasper Bernes

Stanford University Press

Engaging debates around the status of unpaid reproductive labor, this chapter investigates Bernadette Mayer’s multifarious project Memory, which is simultaneously a performance, a conceptual work, an installation, and an epic poem. In attempting to document, down to the smallest detail, every aspect of her life for thirty days—using photographs, audio recordings, and written notation—Mayer effectively demonstrates the subsumption of the entirety of life by the protocols and routines of work as well as the transformation of the relationship between unpaid reproductive work and feminized wage labor. Mayer’s “total” artwork, which merges different technologies into a single apparatus, prefigures the reorganization of office work around the personal computer, a technology that has probably done more than anything else to ensure that work and home life are unified by enabling white-collar workers to accomplish tasks from home and, in that sense, never leave work.

Keywords:   poetry, Bernadette Mayer, feminization of labor, domestic labor, multimedia, installation art, clerical work, digitization

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