In art history, it was traditionally the male artist who controlled the gaze. He decided what should be depicted and how it should be depicted. The female body was a form that he could desire and control. The women in historic paintings are frequently depicted as timid or pious. She is often naked or scantily clad, and she plays a role that is staged for the man. Feminist criticism and art have involved shifting the male gaze of art history
However, the process of shifting our gaze is not just happening in the art world. The ongoing #MeToo movement is a reminder that women continue to be objectified. Men catcall, mansplain, grope women on the dance floor, stalk them, leer at them and do not take them seriously in the workplace. There is immense pressure to have the perfect body, and girls and boys grow up in a society with gender-defined role expectations.
Therefore, we all need to be proactive in changing our perspective. How are you seen? How do you look at others?