Connecting Art to Justice: the Feminist Art Coalition

“Rather than seeking stark divisions between approaches or themes within feminism, perhaps we should instead look for the many possibilities for productive coalitions.” – Sally J. Scholz

It’s no secret that art comments on, fights against, and breaks the molds of society. Sometimes, it even forms the basis from which activists and earth-shakers build platforms to enact real social change.

connecting art to justice
Apsara DiQuinzio, Senior Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art and Phyllis C. Wattis Matrix Curator at the UC Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive (BAMPFA), first envisioned the Feminist Art Coalition in 2017. (Photo by Page Bertelsen Photography)

The Feminist Art Coalition (FAC) seeks to create a platform where art projects can build creative collaborations between artists and their societies, in exhibitions that give established institutions a way to give voice to their commitments to social justice and structural change. Supported by The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, FAC connects art museums and nonprofit institutions to present a series of events beginning in Fall 2020, and continuing over the course of one year–a critical year, as we’ve mentioned, leading up to the next American presidential election.

Read More

Deborah Cullen-Morales Appointed Program Officer for Arts and Culture

The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation announced the appointment of Deborah Cullen-Morales as the Foundation’s new program officer for Arts and Cultural Heritage. Cullen-Morales will join the Foundation on May 1.

deborah cullen-morales
Deborah Cullen-Morales (Image Credit: Deborah Cullen-Morales)

As a program officer, Cullen-Morales will help shape and direct work in the visual arts across a range of grants and research initiatives supporting art museums, cultural heritage preservation, and conservation. 

“Having led multiple arts institutions, including museums, university galleries, and artist-run spaces, Deborah brings to the position field-wide perspective, deep appreciation of the central role of artists in shaping arts organizations, and a vast network of relationships with artists, curators, scholars, and cultural leaders,” said Elizabeth Alexander, president of The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. “We are thrilled to welcome Deborah and look forward to working with her.”

Read More

What We Can Do To Support Events in Light of COVID-19

Everyone’s talking about it: the coronavirus crisis. As more and more cities and countries take on “stay at home” orders and work to tackle growing medical shortages, events around the world are facing the difficult question of postponement or cancellation.

events covid
Foundations, conventions, and event organizers face a wave of cancellations in the wake of COVID-19. What can we do to help? (Image credit: Mish Vizesi, Unsplash)

For smaller events, cancellation is the same as admitting defeat. Many conventions and festivals run by new or non-established organizations simply cannot survive a year’s worth of lost ticket sales, vendor contracts, and speaking arrangements.

So what can we do to help these organizations survive?

Read More

Philly Artists: Leeway Foundation Needs You!

Philadelphia’s Leeway Foundation recently announced the next step in the application process for their annual Art and Change Grants and Transformation Awards.

The Leeway Foundation will hold an info session via Facebook Live, covering the application process for the 2020 Leeway Transformation Award.

From 4:00 to 5:00 PM ET on Thursday, April 2nd, Program Director Melissa Hamilton will hold a virtual information session via Facebook Live. The session will cover the Foundation’s mission and available grants–most importantly, the session offers interested artists the opportunity to ask questions about the application process for the Leeway Transformation Award, which closes its application window on May 15th.

Read More

Abortion as an Act of Love: Network of Funds Announces New Campaign

National Network of Abortion Funds and Forward Together Unveil Art Campaign Illustrating Multigenerational Support for Abortion as an Act of Love 

On Roe anniversary, new artwork envisions the power of compassionate abortion support because everyone loves someone who had an abortion

Art created by Kenya Martin, Jasmine Burnett and Micah Bazant as a collaboration between National Network of Abortion Funds and Forward Together. (Image Credit: National Network of Abortion Funds)

As this week marks the 47th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, the National Network of Abortion Funds and Forward Together are launching an art campaign that envisions multigeneration love and support during abortion. Forty-seven years after Roe, and in light of attacks attempting to block abortion access at the state and federal level, it’s apparent that Roe was never a promise to abortion access. The recent wave of attacks on abortion have left community members confused about where and if they can access abortion services. Many people are left facing increased attacks, intimidation at clinics, and stigma from their communities for accessing the care that they need—all pushing abortion access even further out of reach.

Read More

Own Your Power: Elizabeth Yntema on Gender Equality in Dance

Editor’s Note: This interview in our Feminist Giving IRL series features Elizabeth Yntema, president and founder of the Dance Data Project (DDP), which promotes “equity in all aspects of classical ballet by providing a metrics-based analysis through our database while showcasing women-led companies, festivals, competitions, venues, special programs and initiatives.” 

dance
Elizabeth Yntema, president and founder of the Dance Data Project (courtesy: Elizabeth Yntema)

1. What do you wish you had known when you started out in your profession?

I wish I had had a female mentor, and she had reassured me that success isn’t defined by a linear path. I have been a corporate attorney, a lobbyist, worked as the Director of Governmental Affairs of the Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce, was employed part-time as a consultant, opened an art gallery and, with three small children, focused on volunteering for a time. Now, I use every single one of my experiences and skills acquired over the decades. 

Read More

How Can Feminist Funding Shift Games Culture?

The game development world is changing. And it’s changing for the better. With feminist funding to shift games culture, even more progress could be made.

At PAX Unplugged, held in Philadelphia from December 6-8, developers and fans alike gathered for a weekend of celebrating one of our favorite pastimes: analog board games. The atmosphere at this convention was different from others I’ve been to in the past. The excitement was there, of course, as was the kid-in-a-candy-shop feeling that permeated the Expo Hall, but there was an edge to the proceedings that I haven’t felt before, a conversation that started a few years ago and is turning into one of the most compelling threads in game development today.

Read More

GameDev Culture Must Change: #MeToo Arrives at Gamer Event

The annual Women in Games European Conference kicked off in London on September 11, facilitating a conversation the games development industry has been itching to have since 2014.

Attendees at the Women in Games European Conference gather for two days of advocacy, discussion, and recognition. (Photo Credit: WIG European Conference)

Sexual harassment, assault, and unhealthy work environments for women, nonbinary individuals, and other marginalized communities are all far too common in gamedev. In recent years, allegations of harassment and assault have come to light, leading to major restructuring decisions from games industry giants like news sources Polygon and IGN, and developer Bethesda.

Read More

Estate Gift will Research and Expose Historic Women Artists

“Lamentation with Saints,” by Plautilla Nelli (public domain)

The Sidney and Lois Eskenazi Museum of Art of Indiana University (IU) in Bloomington, Indiana recently received an estate gift of about $4 million from the late art historian and philanthropist Jane Fortune, who died in 2018. Fortune founded the non-profit Advancing Women Artists (AWA) in 2009 with a mission to research, restore and share women’s artwork, particularly in Florence, Italy. She was known to be a passionate explorer and advocate for the preservation of historic pieces by women and was affectionately dubbed “Indiana Jane” by the Florentine press, according to Smithsonian.com. The new gift to the museum consists of a collection of works as well as funds to back future research and initiatives that will support women artists. 

Read More

WomensWork RI Opens Stage to Women Creators Over 40

Lynne Collinson, Creative Director, WomensWork Theatre Collaborative. (photo credit: Vince Petronio)

Great news for theatre buffs in Rhode Island: a new collaborative, formed a year ago, is now taking off to produce more dramatic works by women. Named WomensWork Theatre Collaborative and headed by Creative Director Lynne Collinson, they will present a trio of plays about madness in 2019 and 2020.

WomensWorkRI Theatre Collaborative describes itself as “a creative collective designed to promote theatrical opportunities for women of all ages. A major mission focus is to provide leadership roles – on and off stage — for women over the age of 40.”

“WomensWork has chosen three plays – all written by women — that examine the ways madness manifests itself in women’s lives, whether from the strain of caring for a parent with a deteriorating mind, the seismic change brought about by midlife crisis, or the daily dread faced by women duty-bound to risk their lives for a tyrant,” said Collison, in an announcement rolling out the slate of plays to be produced over the next year.

Read More