How to Wear Mauve

October 2011

“Miss Lawson, neat inappearance and perfectly coiffed, represents a woman’s testament to joining the post wartime work force. By toying with mainstream expectation, accompanied by pseudo-inspirational expressions, she tosses a wry wink toward to a crowd with hopes of turning such phrases on their heads through candid conversations” Curator, Sabina Nieto,

How To Wear Mauve was a month-long installation and series of performances at mauve?.

Mauve? is an art gallery inside a  sea of cubicles that is part of the UC Berkeley fundraising office, a place where officemates can visit a monthly exhibit.

On a typical Monday morning, the mundane office cubicle, index card, bulletin board, APPROVED stamp, flower vase containing roses, and candy dish are transformed into elements of a ritual as each participant shared their dreams and work life.

During private meetings within the Working Gal’s cubicle, officemates are asked to share their dream jobs by privately recording them on an index card.  The index cards where participants share their dream jobs are stamped–APPROVED–with official a Working Gal seal of approval.

The Working Gal asks them to share their likes and dislikes about their present job. Their answers are kept anonymous but shared on the cubicle’s bulletin board.

As part of the game, their dream jobs remain private (they are never shared with the Working Gal) . To complete the performance, each office mate takes a commemorative portrait that is later installed in the cubicle.


From: Kim

Sent: Mon 11/07/11 10:47 PM

To: Maggie Lawson

Thank you, Working Gal (Maggie),

You and your photographers were a riot to hang out with for the time you were here. I have been enjoying peeking in at your cube–thanks for the bowl of candies and all of the funny messages!



One thought on “How to Wear Mauve

  1. A little late on this, but great project and excellent photos as always Maggie. 🙂

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