"The Missing Woman is a detective novel, a database, a diary, a soap opera, a documentary and none of these. A multimedia fascination with romance, this piece employs and relates to narrative, but it does so in order that it may fragment that sense of coherence, that fiction of the whole story.

It uses fragments of narrative - or the ingredients for a narrative, in opposition to a modernist elimination of content. It draws on the anticipated disruption of sequence and closure engaging our storytelling tendencies. We are teased with a narrative process which is at first offered then withdrawn by contradiction and fragmentation, glimpsed through stolen moments, concealed again, and withdrawn again, until we no longer know what is missing. But something is.

These images or montages are intensely personal, chronicling a romance as an anti-narrative. Sexuality is at the core of these exploded fragments".

(From a catalogue statement by the artist)

"Marie Yates pursues the subject of sexual difference in the occupied territory of language, deploying a complex juxtaposition of jewel-like images of icons, symbols and indexical signs to engage us in a multilayered reading of the work. Visually the work is unified by the technique of montage but then fragmented into a series of objects".

(From the Riverside Studios, London: catalogue of "Beyond the Purloined Image" 1983 by the curator, Mary Kelly).

 

 

The Missing Woman 1983 Riverside Installation

 

The Missing Woman 1982 Installation
Installation view - "Beyond the Purloined Image", Riverside Studios, London 1983

 

 

The Missing Woman detail1

 

The Missing Woman 1982. Detail
21 coloured photographs mounted on board.

8 panels 12.5" x20"
9 panels 18.75" x21.5"
4 panels 19.5" x 30"

 

 

 

TheMissingWomandetail2

 

The Missing Woman 1982. Detail
21 coloured photographs mounted on board.

8 panels 12.5" x20"
9 panels 18.75" x21.5"
4 panels 19.5" x 30"

 

 

The Missing Woman 1984 The New Museum NY Installation2

 

The Missing Woman 1982 (Installation)
Installation view - "Difference: On Representation and Sexuality",
The New Museum of Contemporary Art, New York City 1984

 

 

The Missing Woman detail3

 

The Missing Woman 1982. Detail
21 coloured photographs mounted on board.

8 panels 12.5" x20"
9 panels 18.75" x21.5"
4 panels 19.5" x 30"

 

The Missing Woman detail4

 

The Missing Woman 1982. Detail
21 coloured photographs mounted on board.

8 panels 12.5" x20"
9 panels 18.75" x21.5"
4 panels 19.5" x 30"

 

 

The Missing Woman 1983 RiversideInstallation2

 

The Missing Woman 1982 (Installation)
Installation view - "Beyond the Purloined Image", Riverside Studios, London 1983

 

 

The Missing Woman 1984 The New Museum NY Installation2

 

 

The Missing Woman 1982 (Installation)
Installation view - "Difference: On Representation and Sexulaity", The New Museum of Contemporary Art, New York City 1984

 

 

This project stresses the absence of woman as a subject in her own right in a phallocentric culture which defines woman in terms of lack; in the fragmentary photo-texts, our desire for a fetish-image, fixed identity or narrative closure is checked, in this refusal of the image of woman.

The Missing Woman is a play of images and texts which bring into presence many absences. We are presented with a series of images in which the visual and verbal codes are fragmented, repeated and limited to minimise representation to the degree that the presence referred to in the title, the subject of the narrative is experienced as an absence and not as is usually the case, accommodated, filled in, completed, in the constitution of meaning.

There are 21 panels, mostly hand-colored black and white photos and montage. There is no particular order of view.

from Joanna Isaak - "WOMEN: The Ruin of Representation" in AFTERIMAGE 1985

The Missing Woman 1982