Monday, November 21, 2011

You've Come a Long Way Baby

At the MoMA exhibit of historically-interesting Diego Rivera murals, I was struck by the scrapbook entry with the caption noting the New York presence of "Diego Rivera, with his wife and A. Conger Goodyear, president of the Museum of Art." The wife: Frida Kahlo. Unnamed, undescribed, unthinkable nowadays. The curator was very sly to show this particular page.
"You've Come a Long Way Baby" is from an advertising campaign for Benson and Hedges. The ads come fully-packed with their own baggage. Below is the copy for a 1969 ad. Idiotic? Patronizing? Well-meaning? Commoditizing a movement?

Virginia Slims: 1969
"You've come a long way, baby."
"In 1912, Lucille Watkins had to sneak out to the chicken coop to smoke a cigarette. You don't have to play hide and smoke anymore. Now there's even a cigarette for women only."

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