• April 1, 2005
  • Posted by Marc

Clarifying A Lingering Issue


A recent Swoon piece spotted in Amsterdam photgraphed by Kendall

Since many of you have come to the Wooster website for the first time in the last week or so, and since a lot of you are discovering new artists for the first time in the Wooster archives, we thought that this would be a good time to clarify a lingering issue with the website, one that we receive emails at least once a week….

First, for the record - the artist Swoon is definately, 100% a woman.


Second, we’ve actually always known that Swoon was a woman, and are
aware that in an interview in the archives we attribute her incorrectly as a

To explain - back when we first launched the Wooster website, Swoon was seeking more anonymity than perhaps now and she felt maybe being attributed as a man might create even more mystery to her work. She didn’t ask us to attribute her as being male, it happened by mistake. But when we asked her what we should do, she felt that perhaps it should stay the way it was. Many months later, we both agreed that perhaps it was a mistake to say that she was a man and not a woman, but we also agreed that we shouldn’t go back and change history. We’ve never changed a post on the Wooster website and thought that we would leave it as is. Now in retrospect, this is perhaps a mistake as well.

So, to clarify this, we though we’d let Swoon explain it in her own words. Here’s a recent email exchange she had on this issue…

“hey, i was just wondering if you were a guy or a girl? my friend told me you
were a girl, but the wooster collective refers to you as a guy on the
site, so i\‘m just trying to clear it up….your stuff is amazing either way.
”... savannah locklin

“hi savannah, to answer your question, i am a woman. there is a little confusion around the wooster website and it is partly my fault, or mostly, i should say. i actually saw the little slip that they had made concerning my gender before it went to post and i let it slide, it was a very, very common mistake at the time. the wooster site was one of the first interviews i had ever done and i wasn’t at all sure how i felt about being public as a person outisde of the already public nature of my work. i had been working on the street for years in total anonymity with no one paying any attention, and i wasn’t sure how open i realy wanted to be—a little ambiguity around gender i decided to let slide figuring that confusion of identity is what an alias is all about. i was being a little mischievous, and to be quite honest i often feel frustrated at the gender question in interviews. i think it’s so important for women to acknowledge and inspire one another, but in my work i am also reaching for a larger human connection that transcends a conversation about wether i wear panties or briefs. i think our mamas did a lot of work so that we could step up to a level playing field and do what we love, and i often feel that both the negetive and positive attention around me being female is distracting, i just want to get down to work. so that’s the long answer of why marc has had to answer hate mails for calling me a guy on his site for the last two years…... thanks. swoon