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The mask more clearly than any other motif provides a means to explore how femininity is constructed as a masquerade (following psychoanalyst, Joan Riviere, philosopher Simone de Beauvoir and critical theorist, Judith Butler) - something that must be "performed" or constructed daily as an appearance. The interrogation of the mask exposes femininity as a cultural construction - neither nature nor biology, but the product of historical and cultural specificity. Women artists deconstruct this "trope", breaking its impact and often exposing what is behind the mask or its making.