The summer has been busy with research and creation. San Francisco gallerist Catharine Clark selected my HERSTORY proposal to be part of the 50|50 exhibit at the Sanchez Art Center. The concept is for artists to create fifty 6×6 inches works over fifty days. In its eleventh year, the exhibition is an important fundraiser that supports local and meaningful art programs.
My proposal is a tribute to remarkable, influential, and trailblazing women from herstory. The concept is inspired by how Lady Justice is a symbol of impartiality in our judicial system. Standing stoically with a scale in one hand and a sword in the other, she is blindfolded representing that power, status, or money has no influence. Standard custom polymer braille signs become repurposed altering function. The artworks highlight leaders, innovators, artists, whistle-blowers, advocates, activists, and martyrs. History must be inclusive preserving truth and justice.
June 10th was the first day to begin creating artworks for the exhibit. Identifying just fifty individuals was a challenge. The list must be diverse in age, accomplishments, backgrounds, and life experiences. As final selections came to focus, time has been intense trying to dispel personal bias.
SANDRA BLAND: Civil rights activist (#SandySpeaks) who championed against racial injustice and a minor traffic violation precipitated her death while in police custody.
WILMA MANKILLER: First Principal Chief of the Cherokee Nation, 1998 Presidential Medal of Freedom winner and activist whose focus was education and health care.
KATO SHIDZUE: Japanese feminist, advocate, and politician who in the 1930’s opened one of Japan’s first birth control clinics.
SOPHIE CRUZ: An 8 years-old American activist working towards ensuring DAPA (Deferred Action for Parents of Americans) who gained recognition at age 5 by giving Pope Francis a pro-immigration letter.
NANCY PELOSI: First female Democratic leader of the House of Representatives from California’s 12th District, first female speaker of the House, instrumental in the Affordable Care Act passing, lead Wall Street reforms, and currently serving a third term as Speaker
MARSHA P. JOHNSON: Transgender woman who played key role in the Stonewall Uprising and gay liberation movement.
The next step was finalizing a color for the braille pieces. During the Holy Roman Empire, husbands crowned wives with a gold wreath after fifty years of marriage. Today, I reclaim the act and color by highlighting herstory.
The preview fundraiser is Friday Aug. 30th from 6-8pm:
Over 3,000 works will be on display!
50|50. Sanchez Art Center. Pacifica, CA. August 30 – September 22, 2019.