Issuu on Google+

1

tOCK

SUMMER 2011 — ­ ISSUE #1

DEADS

An Open Letter to Women Everywhere

I love you because you hate the same things

PENNY ARCADE PRIMITIVE HJÄRTA SMÄRTA GIRLS GET BUSY SASHA GREY MOTHER'S MEETING KATHLEEN PALMER CLAIRE BARROW

DEADS

1

tOCK


2

D

E

DEADS

2

tOCK

A

D

S


S

3

t O C K

DEADS

3

tOCK


4

Soft infusions of sooty ashes spring from the irritable flames of her burning bra. Soft infusions of sooty ashes spring from the irritable flames of her Dark hairs prickle the skin of her legs; burning bra. her freed breasts drooping low Dark hairs prickle the skin of her legs; underneath her sagging top as she her freed breasts drooping low slings the underwear, underneath her sagging top as she stitched with hidden notions of slings the underwear, constraint, to the wind. stitched with hidden notions of constraint, to the wind. DEADS

4

tOCK


5

MANIFESTO

Feminism is dead. Or that's what we have been told. For me, it was always about the fight for power, and it still is. The word conjures up images of fierce girl gangs pounding the streets, laughing in abundance to the wind; authoritative women laying claim to their needs; vulnerable sweethearts laughing and crying together. It is a celebration of all women and of what being a woman represents. It isn’t the irritable flames firing from burning bras, or the prickle of dark leg hairs in their full, unadulterated glory. It is about ownership, about not shutting up, and being able to move on from stereotyped images and rules governing the way women should look and act.This view attacks the earlier feminists who proclaim that she who takes value in her appearance waives her right to tick the feminist box just as much as the girls trapped in painfully laborious beauty routines and confines. Feminism is about the power of choice, about choosing to live a life only you see fit, and trying our hardest to make sure we gain equality. What could be bad about that? This magazine was created to present you with women who are aspirational, for all the right reasons. They are opinionated, hard-working and have fresh perspectives and projects which you may not have considered or knew were out there already. Penny Arcade (P36) has been in the performing arts business for thirty years, and design duo Hjärta Smärta (P70) have based their project around women still working in graphic arts who are as old as 94. And, of course we have a few men thrown in there too, no worries; including Andrew Grune, one half alongside Lui Nemeth as the owners of new concept-based fashion store, Primitive (P14), and art director Damien Poulain’s ongoing book series POV Female (P74). Most of the lovely people presented here are setting out and creating work on their own: they aren't afraid to cross boundaries, and they are vehemently passionate about what they do. We have focused our first issue on print: an ironic play on the purists who imagine a paper-free world for our imminent future. These tactile creators:from Girls Get Busy zine creator Beth Siveyer (P66),to Jenny Scott's new community for creative mothers and soon to be Mamzine Mother's Meeting, (P66) prove that technology merely aids us in the same old things we did before. Some things never die. For now, feminism won't either.

—Rachel Miles— contact@deadstockmagazine.com DEADS

5

tOCK


6

DEADS

6

tOCK


Masthead

7

DEADS

01

t O C K ISSUE #1

EDITOR-IN-CHIEF & ART DIRECTION RACHEL MILES CONTRIBUTING EDITOR ABIGAIL CORBETT CONTRIBUTORS PUSHA ALEXANDER, ELIZABETH CONNOR, CAMILO ECHEVERRI, IRIS ERLINGSDOTTIR, EMILY JACOB, RASHA KAHIL, SELINA MAKIN, AMANDINE PAULANDRÉ WITH SPECIAL THANKS TO BRENDA POLAN, ROB DE NIET, MARK WELLS, ANTONY PRICE, SACHA LYNCH ROBINSON, CATHERINE TAYLOR, ROBYN DAVIS, JANE MAY MARTIN COVER PHOTOGRAPHER: IRIS IRLINGSDOTTER STYLING: RACHEL MILES MODEL: HEIDI KNIGHT, WEARING SHIRT BY MM6

WWW.DEADSTOCKMAGAZINE.COM

DEADS

7

tOCK


8

Contents FA S H I O N 12 Trend Report 14 Primitive, London 18 Show Reviews 20 Suicidal Tendencies by Iris Erlingsdottir

SPOTLIGHT 32 Pusha Alexander 36 Penny Arcade 42 Amandine Paulandré 48 Camilo Echeverri 52 Rasha Kahil

PUBLISHING 62 Mother's Meeting 66 Girls Get Busy 68 Hjärta Smärta 72 POV Female 74 Sasha Grey

AGENDA 80 Politics: Reflections on Reinvigoration 84 Segregating Sexual Responsibility 86 Good Girls Gone Bad 88 Slutwalking: Why? 92 Women War Artists 98

Tracey Emin

DEADS

8

tOCK


9

CONTRIBUTORS ABIGAIL CORBETT IS OUR CONTRIBUTING EDITOR AND FREELANCE JOURNALIST

IRIS ERLINGSDOTTIR SHOT OUR FASHION STORY 'SUICIDAL TENDENCIES' ON P20. SHE IS CURRENTLY IN HER SECOND YEAR OF BA PHOTOGRAPHY DEGREE AT THE LONDON COLLEGE OF COMMUNICATION

SELINA MAKIN WILL SOON MOVE TO NEW YORK THIS SEPTEMBER TO WORK FOR PAMELA LOVE. READ HER FASHION SHOW COVERAGE ON P18.

ELIZABETH CONNOR IS A FREELANCE JOURNALIST. SHE WROTE OUR GOOD GIRLS GONE BAD FEATURE ON P86

AMANDINE PAULANDRÉ IS A PHOTOGRAPHER CURRENTLY LIVING IN PARIS. SHE SHOT OUR PATTERN FASHION STORY ON P42.

DOPER JONES IS A GRAFFITI ARTIST HAILING FROM NYC. SHE PRODUCED OUR SUMMER PLAYLIST FOR THIS ISSUE, PLAYABLE ON OUR WEBSITE DEADSTOCKMAGAZINE.COM

DEADS

9

tOCK


10

PHOTOGRAPH BY RACHEL MILES

DEADS

10

tOCK


11

FA S H I O N

12

Trend Report 14

Primitive, London 18

Show Reviews 20

Suicidal Tendencies by Iris Erlingsdottir DEADS

11

tOCK


12 IMAGES: NIKE STADIUM

TREND

CHLOË SEVIGNY X NIKE Chloë Sevigny, the downtown New York 'it' girl and fashion icon for the hipster set, who sped to fame in Larry Clark's iconic 90's film Kids, recently teamed up with sportswear supreme label Nike to create a sumptuous leather release in the form of a hooded bomber. Twee yet tough, the jacket comes complete with layered felt details, emblazened with a back graphic of a guilt-ridden girl and a 'Give me Thine Heart' logo stuck to the chest. Sevigny stepped out of the realms of her distinct fashion style to create the piece at the Nike Stadium in New York, one of six custom design shops owned by the brand. A muse to many, her limited edition piece will be sure to sell out fast.

CHLOË'S DESTROYER JACKET IS AVAILABLE AT SELECT RETAILERS. VISIT WWW.NIKESTADIUM.COM FOR MORE DETAILS

DEADS

12

tOCK


IMAGES: KARLA SPETIC

13

KARLA SPETIC TAKES ON THE OPEN ROAD

KARLA SPETIC S/S 2011 The S/S 2011 collection for Karla Spetic features idyllic landscapes, dreamy open roads and the hope of wild abandon they represent, digitally printed onto slippy shift dresses, close cut blazers and tightfitting peplum skirts. Their Australian outback attire comes complete with the pastel blends of blush, chalk blue and sunset orange. available at WWW.KARLASPETIC.COM

PHOTO: RACHEL MILES

LILIA YIP

UK-based Singaporean fashion designer Lilia Yip declares her designs as clothes that have a human story. Her playful prints of appliquĂŠd hands are given names such as Heartfelt, and Lilia makes sure her clothes come with a heart too, by producing them with ecologically sound processes. WWW.LILIAYIP.COM

LILIA TAKES A HANDS ON APPROACH

DEADS

13

tOCK


14

ANDREW GRUNE, PICTURED LEFT, ESTABLISHED PRIMITIVE WITH PARTNER LUI NEMETH

Art meets commerce at the new Haggerston-based concept store, Primitive. Rachel Miles meets the owners.

PHOTOS COURTESY OF PRIMITIVE

DEADS

14

tOCK


15

PRIMITIVE

A BIT PRIMITIVE

DEADS

15

tOCK


16

A RECENT EXHIBITION AT PRIMITIVE: T-SHIRT DESIGNER JOSEPH NIGOGHOSSIAN

DEADS

16

tOCK


17

Hidden beneath the railway arches of Haggerston station, it is easy to walk past Primitive without a passing glance. But this new store, established by partners Lui Nemeth and Andrew Grune, is well worth the second look. Created in order to support young designers, it offers up a mixed array of Tokyo and London-based fashion in a constantly evolving multi-disciplinary arts space.

Nadir Tejani, whose blackened silhouettes morph and disguise the human form. As well as stocking a variety of independent publications such as L_A_N, the zine for the fashion futurist, and Japanese style bibles Street, Fruits and Tune, their offerings from Tokyo are a varied mix of young brands such as Giza, Banzai and Ilil.

Lui and Andrew met in Tokyo one New Year’s Eve at a Louis Vuitton party whilst Lui was travelling to visit her family. Her father, the late fashion designer Christopher Nemeth, built a dedicated following in his adopted home of Japan; the flagship store in the Harajuku district selling the drop crotched and boldly stitched menswear which became his signature in abundance. Like Christopher, who was also an acclaimed painter, Lui comes from an art background. Her previous studies in Fine Art at Central Saint Martin’s, combined with Andrew’s prior art practices - which evolved to see him produce fashion pieces – positioned them in the perfect place to blend art and commerce. Before they knew it, they were living in London and with plans to open Primitive. Established as an art gallery, the Primitive space held four installations before it opened for sartorial business. “When we have installations now we try and mix art and fashion with our designers making an artwork within the space,” they state. “We normally have one exhibition per month and the installation will remain until the one that follows. We try to make the space constantly changing to give people a new experience every time they come in.” The last exhibition saw the abundances of teenage romance take over the store in the form of Joseph Nigoghossian’s hazy and overpowering ‘First Kiss.’ As well as screening a short film of 100 frames, inspired by the idealism of adolescent love and desire, each frame then informed the creation of a series of prints and t-shirts which were displayed and sold in the space. “We feel like in London there are not many places that are run by young people. For a lot of the other places, it is too hard for designers who have just started to be stocked there,” Lui states. “There are so many creative people in London but with not very many outlets available for people to express their creativity to the public.” The designers they stock are innovative, with invigorating gusto to their pieces; ranging from the bold accessories collaboration between Ambush X Cassette Playa which laser-cut motifs and fluorescent plastics, to the more reserved designs of

The mix of fashions from two polar fashion capitals is refreshing and reflects Andrew and Lui’s connection with both cities, as they explain; “What we like about London is that everyone has his or her own style that doesn’t really care about which collection or from what era it is. London style seems to have a story behind what people wear, history or meaning to the clothes. Toyko style is really interesting to us because it’s an extreme version of western style that became their own. In Japan there is a lot more social and family pressure to conform. Therefore people rebel with their clothes in order to stand out and be noticed,” they reflect, touching upon the heightened awareness of the fashion consumer in Tokyo. Taking an interest in the artistic side of fashion, Lui and Andrew are on the constant look out for new and exciting designs. “Collections every 6 months aren’t very appealing to us – we like designers that are constantly creating and evolving their ideas all the time. We want our shop to be a space that young designers come to present their freshly made things, and sell them straight away. Items that are innovative, new and exciting are the things that we like to stock,” they state. Their upcoming exhibition fulfils this desire, which will see design duo Ava Catherside rework vintage pieces and create an installation with smoke and projectors, transforming the space with atmospheric presence. Though the shop remains in its’ infancy, it is already promising in the plans Lui and Andrew have for its’ expansion, as they detail: “We want to get another arch and have another space for a gallery or extension of the shop. In a few years, we want to move to Tokyo and open a Primitive Tokyo.” Though their somewhat elusive location may remain hidden to the uneducated passer-by, Primitive’s ingenious ways of merging the worlds of fashion and art will not go unnoticed. PRIMITIVE, ARCH 313 FREDERICK TERRACE, E8 4EW IS OPEN MON-WED APPOINTMENT ONLY, THU-SUN 12:00-20:00

DEADS

17

tOCK


18

JEAN MEETS JOAN Recognised as one to break down the gender walls, bring couture to the street and the street to the catwalk, and famously introducing plus size models to his runways, normally ruled by size zeros, Jean Paul Gaultier looked to the heady 80s club years of glam rock for his S/S 2011 collection. Each model wore a moody attitude and choppy mullet haircut, synonymous with pop-rock legend David Bowie and the haphazard hair styling of Joan Jett. Clothes consisted of skin-tight leathers, see-through materials, meshes, and capes. Classic glam rock structures such as peaked, square shoulders, straight leg trousers and capes were brought up to date with romantic styling: laces, chic ruffles, pleats, and flowery prints overruled the more obvious options of metallics and sequins. Power shoulders came in the form of a pencil trouser suit, offered in accompanying variations of lace and denim; vehement red and chalk-blue leather ensembles were made complete with hot pants. Photo:Yannis Vlamos / GoRunway.com

Other elements to the collection included 80's sci-fi graphic print maxis and jumpsuits, lace tights in red, green and brown and knee-high black patent leather tie-up boots. The occasional signature Jean Paul Gaultier corset made an appearance,layered under see-through chiffons.Bursts of safari plant prints adorning dresses and skirts closed the show, like the exiting glance of a lounge bar after a heavy and infamous night of club excess comes to an end. SELINA MAKIN

DEADS

18

tOCK


19

Always one to challenge commercial concepts of beauty and femininity, Watanabe’s S/S 11 collection was no exception. Faceless models seamlessly flew down the catwalk in a shower of stripes, from the long sleeved t-shirts attached to pleated skirts, to leggings and even the sashes on the variations of squashy boater hats.

Photo:Yannis Vlamos / GoRunway.com

The show was awash with nautical influences, even though Watanabe’s inspiration was ‘Tokyo dolls,’ a different meaning could perhaps be understood from these pieces which presented sailorpatterned prints, blue or black and white stripes, triangular sailor collars and belted dresses and trench coats. Long cotton tunics were placed over cropped trousers or ankle-length skirts, finished with a white two-stripe detail reminiscent of sailor attire. Trenches came in traditional and cropped forms of beige, grey-blue, or white with a faint vertical stripe, with sheer varieties produced in anticipation of the summer breeze. Zig-zag stripes and polka dots were flashed on long, flowing skirts towards the end of the collection and a more revised masculine edge emerged at the finish with black blazers in a varied assortment of cropped,standard and mid lengths,accompanied by Watanabe’s classic draping and layering of soft chiffons, thicker cottons and linens, which, although prevalent throughout, came to a crescendo towards the end.

J U N YA WATA N A B E : TOKYO SEA

SELINA MAKIN

DEADS

19

tOCK


20 LEATHER JACKET: CUSTOM MADE BY CLAIRE BARROW, DRESS: AMERICAN APPAREL

—Suicidal Tendencies—

PHOTOGRAPHER: IRIS ERLINGSDOTTIR STYLIST: RACHEL MILES MODEL: HEIDI KNIGHT

DEADS

20

tOCK


21

DEADS

21

tOCK


22

JUMPSUIT: VINTAGE. BELT: STYLIST’S OWN

DEADS

22

tOCK


23

DRESS: VINTAGE. BLAZER: KATIE EARY

DEADS

23

tOCK


24

LEATHER WAISTCOAT: CUSTOM MADE BY CLAIRE BARROW, DRESS: VINTAGE, BOOTS: ROKIT

DEADS

24

tOCK


25

LEATHER JACKET: AS BEFORE, DRESS: STOLEN GIRLFRIENDS CLUB

DEADS

25

tOCK


26

DEADS

26

tOCK


27 LEFT TO RIGHT — BODY: AMERICAN SELECT, T-SHIRT: STYLIST’S OWN

DEADS

27

tOCK


28

BODY: AS BEFORE, SKIRT: GEORGIA HARDINGE

DEADS

28

tOCK


29

JUMPSUIT: VINTAGE. SHOES: SWEDISH HASBEENS

DEADS

29

tOCK


30

DEADS

30

tOCK


31

SPOTLIGHT

32

Pusha Alexander 36

Penny Arcade 42

Amandine PaulandrĂŠ 48

Camilo Echeverri 52

Rasha Kahil

DEADS

31

tOCK


32

A photo story by Pusha Alexander

MY FAVOURITE LADIES

DEADS

32

tOCK


33

DEADS

33

tOCK


34

DEADS

34

tOCK


35

DEADS

35

tOCK


36

I HOPE EXPECTING MONOLOGUES, VA G I N A D O E S

YOU’RE NOT T H E VA G I N A BECAUSE MY NOT SPEAK.

ALL THESE MONOLOGUES FROM WOMEN WHO DIDN’T KNOW THEY HAD SEXUAL ORGANS— Penny Arcade is New York’s original bad girl. From Warhol superstar to perfomance artist extraordinaire, her visceral work never fails to make an impact. Rachel Miles meets her to discuss the benefits of beginning with a bad reputation.

DEADS

36

tOCK


37

NOR DOES IT H AV E A F U N N Y H AT, NOR DOES IT H AV E A F AV O U R I T E COLOUR.

— NO WONDER IT’S SO SUCCESSFUL DEADS

37

tOCK


38

Building on a Bad Reputation

She omits a frustrated sigh. "But the work is not overtly and directly political. And when I say overtly and directly I mean I could go to a housing estate in the far reaches of London and people would understand what I was talking about. I don’t shroud what I do. I don’t make art for the same 300 art school cripples who go to see them."

In between long draws on her cigarette, Penny Arcade — notorious bad girl, New York icon, performance artist extraordinaire — informs me that during her recent trip to London, everybody thought she was Blondie. Long lost fans would glance at her, gain that knowing look on their faces and approach her with stories of the posters adorning their walls and the avid fan tales of their youth. They share the same bone structure, she tells me. Others merely wanted to enquire if she was visiting for the Royal Wedding, to which she responded, "No. I’m here for the revolution." A particularly rare type of character for whom the humdrum standards of structuralised and mediated normality do not apply, Penny lives her life by an admirable set of ideals. She is much more concerned with pertinent world issues than the folly of a royal holiday, and these remain central to her life and work: the threatening death penalty for homosexuals in Uganda and the increasingly malevolent censorship in the Western world are amongst the many others on her agenda. "People are so pathetically unaware of the politics that are going on," she states, puffing out a plume of smoke rich in animosity.

Her recent visit to London saw her perform at the Barbican in a remake of Jean Dupuy’s More Soup and Tart from 1974, held at the multi-disciplinary space The Kitchen. A seminal curator in New York’s 70s avant-garde scene, Dupuy invited key players, artists and musicians to perform in steady rotation. One of 30 artists presenting two-minute pieces, she was one of the few, if any, who referenced the original performance. She chose to honour Hannah Wilke, the late conceptual feminist artist who performed at the original show. I had the pleasure of watching Penny recite her piece to me, a sardonic take on the Vagina Monologues. Satire comes easy to Penny; charisma practically tears out of the seams of her womanly figure. Her performances are full of perfectly jaunty eye movements and pauses which remain poised, as she readies herself to deliver the next joke with crucial timing, in order to induce the most laughter. And laughter there is a lot of: she is known for her intimate relationship with the audience, in which her monologues and performances involve the audience with scorning eye contact and direct address.

This ignorance extends, she believes, to the stage and arena of which she has occupied steadily for the past thirty years. A performance art veteran, Penny – previously known as Susana Ventura, perhaps more Havana club than sideshow fun fare – became a regular fixture on the downtown avant-garde scene in New York in the mid80's. She has since gained a reputation for her bold shows characterised for confronting conventional cracks in society and highlighting issues such as gay and transgender rights. "A lot of the performance that’s being done right now deals with shock; you know, body fluids, nudity… things that I don’t really find shocking. I find homelessness shocking. I find world starvation shocking.I find killing homosexuals all over the world shocking."

Penny has toured her show Bitch! Dyke! Faghag! Whore! globally since the early 90's with an animated troupe of erotic dancers, flitting from debates about AIDS, pornography to prostitutes to free for all dance sessions designed for audience participation. With Penny's talent in last minute tweaking and

DEADS

38

tOCK


39 impromptu alterations, the show is never dull, and in its' nearing twenty- year lifespan, the show has totalled over 1500 performances. "I did a run of Bitch! Dyke! Faghag! Whore! in San Francisco in 2009, and all these 20-somethings who’ve been groomed by the culture to think that they’re total experts in their 20s — I mean that’s the culture we live in right now, right?" She quickly interjects her own thoughts with snippets of reflection on wider society, a regular and likeable character trait. "They were very blasé: "We understand everything about feminism, we understand everything about AIDS." And then they were like, just totally knocked out by the show. Because the work is a visceral experience; it is not ideal in empathy."

Curtis. Whilst she was still a teenager, Penny became involved with Yippies, a youth international political party in New York. Deemed as highly theatrical politics, the group was heavily active in the free speech movements of the 60’s. Whilst answering phones at the hotline, she drew the attention of Robin Morgan, who had recently established the feminist activist group W.I.T.C.H. — an acronym for Women’s International Terrorist Conspiracy from Hell — in a nearby space appropriated by Yippies owner Abby Hoffman, and she began to attend their meetings.

For Penny, her youth was a rocky start. "I was that original girl in the ‘60s, where everybody had said that I’d slept with everybody in my town, and I never had. And I was really martyred in my home town; a small working class factory town." And so the beginnings of her life-long dialect with Bad Reputation – the title of which has been integrated in to the name of one of her shows as well as her first book, which was released two years ago. "It didn’t affect only me, it affected my brothers and sisters and my family. And they didn’t stick up for me either. I was just left alone to be martyred. If it was India they would have been throwing stones at me. These are issues that don’t change, because the real dialogue never happens." Penny hints at this unspoken dialogue on many occasions during our interview, and due to her innate ability in speaking her mind so freely, she regularly touches upon issues that more commonly get tossed out of conversations.

"I think she must have been maybe ten years older than me," Penny remarks of Robin. "I went to a couple of their meetings and I said to her at one point, “This is a tea party for the girlfriends of leftist political pigs.” They were all involved with these guys in the left who were totally misogynist. I was like, “You know, I don’t hate men. Most of my men friends are gay and I find them really supportive.” I didn’t have the same view as them. Their whole issue was that they didn’t want to be housewives." Comfortable in their positions of privilege, the unintentional segregation of the feminist movement struck a chord with Penny.

"My mother would have loved not to have to sew in that sweatshop all day. It didn’t include class issues, it didn’t include minority women. I was at one of the meetings where they were deciding to be lesbians. I was bisexual, not acting on it, but I knew that I was bisexual. And I remember saying to them, "Oh my God, you don’t want to have sex with women because you are sexually attracted to women, you want to have sex with women because you hate men?" I was allowed to say all that because I was 17 years old.That would be the last time in a group of women in a political organisation that I would be allowed to speak freely. Because as soon as you were a little bit older, then it was the popularity contest, you know?"

Penny moved out of her town at an early age, and taking the route of many who felt displaced and stigmatised by the prejudices of small town principles, she relocated to New York. "I think as a life-long outsider, the only place where I really found some level of acceptance as a human being was as an artist among artists." Her move took her to the perfect place to discover this creative circle: within months Penny was immersed in Warhol’s infamous Factory; taking a starring role in the satirical comedy drama Women In Revolt, alongside drag queens Candy Darling and Jackie

This popularity contest is what Penny defines as one of the main reasons she believes feminism doesn’t

DEADS

39

tOCK


40 succeed in honouring its’ original goals. “We’re hardwired to be competitive with other women, and that’s one thing that feminists will never talk about, so it never gets changed. I’m surrounded by some pretty extraordinary women: all feminists, and all highly self-individuated, who would never fit in to any kind of feminist group because of the way that it is structured,” she states. Following the situations which affected her in her younger years – including being raped many times as a teenager, in violent situations – she didn’t agree with the approach which was adopted by earlier feminists: “I didn’t like the alternatives that were offered to me: which were that I was supposed to be broken and a victim forever,” she states. “I’ve always said that I have had a sad life but I’m not a sad person. That was my choice,” she adds. One feminist movement Penny adamantly expresses her enthusiasm for is the Riot Grrrl movement of the early 90's, of which she was heavily involved. “I loved it. This was a movement of feminism I could wrap my head around, because itis anti-racist, it’s anti-homophobic, it’s taking in the big picture.” But unfortunately, this movement didn’t maintain its' momentum, either. “Within a year and a half it was completely co-opted! I went to an event in New York that was set up by the New York Riot Grrls and the place was packed because it was the thing of the moment. Everybody who got up to speak; you couldn’t hear them, because some of the girls who had come along were chatting up all the boys and making all this noise. It wasn’t reaching within their own social scene: these women have something to say and they don’t have testosterone to capture the attention.” Penny refers to biological differences regularly, and unlike the many activists who believe that gender is a construct, believes that biology has everything to do with it. “We don’t have testosterone. It can’t be learnt, you know? What women have is much more subtle,” she says.

20 YEARS AGO ALL THE M A J O R N E W S PA P E R S I N B R I TA I N C O U L D N ' T BELIEVE THE NEW YORK T I M E S WA S U N A B L E TO PRINT THE TITLE O F M Y S H O W. N O W OF A SUDDEN YOU C A N ' T S AY T H E W O R D BITCH ON THE AIR?

Penny can clearly identify cracks in facades easily, but where does she think the movement is currently headed now? “Right now we are in this supposedly postfeminist time, which is so absurd. In Bad Reputation I say ‘Post-feminism: is it a breakfast cereal or an after school snack?’ I have no idea, because we still don’t have the original goals of feminism, which is kind of staggering.” I tell Penny of the reluctance I have encountered by many women towards feminism, for the way in which it has been mediated as an angry movement, and one which discounts men as the enemy. “People never do anything unless they are personally at risk," she replies. "The minute a woman is working somewhere and finds out that a man who is doing the same job as she is getting paid, or as soon as she realises that she’s not going to be able to get a certain kind of upgrade because she is female, is that the real issue is that she is female.Then all of a sudden they get politicised. It is human nature that we don’t get politicised unless it’s something directly occurring with us, you know?” Penny was involved with Feminists for Free Expression, a group established by women working in the creative fields who shared this common ground, but hasn’t

DEADS

40

tOCK


41 scared too say; a soothing ability to confront touchy subjects with self-assured logic.

worked with them for quite some time. “The free expression aspect of it of course came around because of the major issues with censorship in this country. I think it’s a really good time for us to get together again because censorship is so high right now in America, it’s gobsmacking. It’s like, "Oh my god, this can’t be happening again." And it is. I did an interview on the BBC 1 radio on JoAnne Good’s late night show a couple of weeks ago and the producer came up to me before the show and said, "Well, I’ve just come back from a BBC mandated class, and we can’t use the word bitch on the air.’ This is at 10.30 at night.And Joanne and I talked about this the whole show,” she says. PENNY PERFORMS “20 years ago, in Britain, the BBC and all the major newspapers in the Britain couldn’t believe that the New York Times was unable to print the title of my show. Bitch! Dyke! Faghag! Whore! was printed in The Times, in The Guardian, in every newspaper; it was said on the air on all the BBC shows, radio and television. Now all of a sudden, almost 20 years later, you can’t say the word bitch on the air?" We discuss the characteristically regressive nature of society and the topical issues respective of the capitals we call our own, pertinent on both sides of the pond: the direction of aid for women being donated to the Salvation Army, protests on cuts, and the possible introduction of abstinence to the educational system in Britain.

At 60, she still views life in constant self-reflection. "I was in Berlin a couple of years ago and a guy interviewed me on stage in front of an audience. We talked about my book and my life and afterwards, when it was over, he turned to me and he said, "How did you survive?" And I didn’t know what he meant. And then I realised that for him that the whole total sum of who I am, and what I went through and the fact that I’m sane and lovely and not bitter — I’m angry about things in society, but I’m not sordid — it was just kind of overwhelming to him. And all he could say was, "How did you survive?" And it was really amazing because I took that away with me and I was like ‘Oh, I survived?’ Because I don’t think of it that way, I think about it in that I won. I grew up to be the person I wanted to be, the kind of person I wanted to be; the values that I was growing in my teens are now like really big trees that I find shade under.” Penny is still grappling with issues: and as with most remarks she makes, she admits them freely. "I’ve always thought that in my relationships with men, I was there to be the helper; to kick his ass into evolution, and to be long suffering. I’ve always been that way: it’s always been a really huge issue with me, about abandoning people. But I am continually abandoning myself!" She remarks, almost shocked at how accurate this insight may be. "I continually abandon myself,’ she repeats. "And I never looked at it that way: I always thought that I had to be bigger, I had to be stronger, I had to put myself second; that I could handle this, whatever it was.’ Penny’s worldly wisdom regularly injects her speech with moments of poignancy, combined perhaps uncharacteristically with the light-heartedness of youth. It is refreshing to see that she is consistently invigorated by her own ability to surprise herself. She pauses for a moment. "Suddenly you see a little bit of clarity and you go, “Oh god, totally misguided.” You know? It doesn’t stop."

She comments on the latter, stating that as a woman, “Your purity is this Holy Grail, and if that is damaged then you’re soiled. You wouldn’t think that that would exist now because a boy having sex at 15 is lauded, but I think it does have to do with people being concerned about appearances. In Bad Reputation I say that when something bad happens to a girl, people say they’re worried about you. But they’re not worried about you, they’re worried about themselves: they don’t want the guilt by association, you know?" If her so-called bad reputation has earnt Penny anything, it is scathing accuracy for what the majority of people are too DEADS

41

tOCK


42

Patterns

A photo story by Amandine PaulandrĂŠ DEADS

42

tOCK


43

DEADS

43

tOCK


44

DEADS

44

tOCK


45

DEADS

45

tOCK


46

DEADS

46

tOCK


47

DEADS

47

tOCK


48

ALL PHOTOS © CAMILO ECHEVERRI, ACCUMULATION PROJECT, 2011

DEADS

48

tOCK


49

Camilo Echeverri

Audacious moments often materialise when they are least expected or anticipated. After six years acting as the creative director of a lingerie company in Colombia, Camilo Echeverri quit suddenly and opened a studio. Since that moment, she has spent her time operating in the realms of what she refers to as, “working within this thin line of reality and fiction, proposed by the fashion world.” Over the past two years she has spent time in London, Latvia and India, and her history and inspirations are pick-pocketed with a similarly global perspective; 'I am building my own mind map of words and questions; a connections map,’ she tells me. Her Accumulation Project explores the use of fashion as a reaction to the outside world. By examining the power of the uniform, she investigates the complexities underpinning the roles of our rationed selves in every day life. “In a way I hate explanations; I prefer to let people build their own perception, their own fiction,' Carmela enthuses. She states that she prefers questions over answers. Her emotional imagery within this series succeeds in encouraging reflections on the ruling entity of the uniform, a characteristic which remains stifling yet universally binding. Carmela may not like to offer explanations, but in this case, luckily for her, the work speaks for itself. RM

DEADS

49

tOCK


50

DEADS

50

tOCK


51

DEADS

51

tOCK


52

Manja and Nina "Why?" This is what Nina asked me over and over again when I came over one morning to photograph her and her mum. "Why do you want to take pictures of us?" Because in the seamless world of self-help media, there is a polished view of motherhood, of how a child must be raised, groomed, dressed, balanced and fulfilled yet disciplined. With photoshopped smiles and bleached giggles. In Manja and Nina, there is a relationship of equals. Of stumbling steps to build a shared space, a tireless ping-pong of knowledge and curiosity, of a woman and her daughter both doing their best. "But why?" she asked again... Why was I compelled to take pictures of Manja and Nina? Because I admired their vulnerability, their trial and error ways; their shared awareness of each other as two people, of different generation, yet one and the same, slowly learning about each other in love and war. I suggested a game to Nina that morning, as we all went to the park after the photoshoot: "Let's pretend I'm your mother today!" I said. "You want me to call you mummy?!" she giggled, amused. "OK!‌ But why?!" Maybe these pictures are somewhat an answer to that question.

DEADS

52

tOCK


53

WORDS AND PHOTOGRAPHS BY RASHA KAHIL — WWW.RASHAKAHIL.COM

DEADS

53

tOCK


54

DEADS

54

tOCK


55

DEADS

55

tOCK


56

DEADS

56

tOCK


57

DEADS

57

tOCK


58

DEADS

58

tOCK


59

DEADS

59

tOCK


60

DEADS

60

tOCK


61

PUBLISHING

62

Mother's Meeting 66

Girls Get Busy 68

Hj채rta Sm채rta 72

POV Female 74

Sasha Grey

DEADS

61

tOCK


62

ARTWORK BY JENNY SCOTT

DEADS

62

tOCK


63

Bored of the support options available when she gave birth to her first baby, freelancer Jenny Scott established her own. Her new community for creative mums breaks the mould of what it means to be a mother. Rachel Miles finds out about the fruits of her labour. Being a mother can be an intimidating prospect, and even more of a daunting experience once the patter of tiny feet have touched the ground. Jenny Scott aims to remedy this. Her new online community Mother’s Meeting has a mission statement which speaks loud and clear to a new generation of mums who are sick of daytime TV and trawling twee baby websites. The site proclaims: "If you want a more inspiring way to spend your precious spare time than visiting difficult relatives or cleaning the bath, join us to meet like-minded mums who love their Balenciaga as much as their baby."

freelance Creative Director and Graphic Designer with an impressive list of previous clients including global heavyweights such as Nike, Coca Cola and Vodafone, and her own agency Checkinit, which she established with a colleague, Jenny is used to flitting at a fast pace from project to project. But, of course, she tells me, it is much harder to keep up with creative projects once becoming a mother. “Being a mum is a full time job, I never expected it to be so demanding!” she reflects. “The reason I keep creative projects ticking over is to keep me sane. No matter how cute your bundle of joy is, it can turn you slightly mad being with a baby twenty four hours a day.”

“I found becoming a mum very exciting from a personal perspective, but as from a creative point of view I felt very isolated,” Jenny tells me. “All the NCT classes I went to were full of older women who seemed to want to compete about who had read the most baby related textbooks.” A

A recent report created by the Council on Contemporary Families found that mothers who wanted to work outside the home but instead remained full-time homemakers have a higher risk of depression. Although those choosing not to work out

DEADS

63

tOCK


64

ARTWORK: JENNY SCOTT

DEADS

64

tOCK


65

JENNY'S ADVICE FOR WOMEN CONSIDERING MOTHERHOOD

of choice had a relatively low risk of depression, they reported that stay-at-home mothers still recount more feelings of loneliness than working mothers. It is clear that community rules, and Jenny aims to support this sense of bonded motherhood with meet-ups arranged to cultural hotspots within the capital. Past events have seen the exclusive members-only club Shoreditch House, the recent print arts exhibition Pick Me Up at Somerset House and a wide plethora of galleries pencilled into the weekly schedule.

"Do it now! It is the hardest and most time consuming thing you will ever do, and you need as much energy as possible. It is also the most rewarding thing you will ever do and you will never regret it! As much as you think your career comes first, as soon as you have a baby your career is the last thing you have time to think about and it really won't seem as important to you as it did pre-baby. So what are you waiting for? Join MM today!"

will never understand until you become a mum yourself. No-one can explain it to you whilst you are pregnant. It is different for everyone and everyone has their own opinions, but there is no denying that it is one of the hardest jobs in the world.” But she sees this as no reason to conform to ideals of what being a mother means. I ask her what mothers inspire her. “Looking at pictures of a pregnant M.I.A used to make me feel inspired,” she says. “She always showed her bump off in a great way: looking fun and exciting, rather than dull and drab. She was the vision of the idea that being a mum does not mean losing your identity.” With advocates such as Katie Shillingford — Fashion Editor at Dazed and Confused — telling Jenny, “Your press release makes me want to have a baby even more just to be part of the club,” Mother’s Meeting reinvigorates any ideas of motherhood being perceived as a boring role. With a Mamzine already in the pipeline, and plans to run professionally-led workshops with guest speakers, Jenny is quickly shattering the territory of motherhood from its’ stereotyped connotations. “I aspire for the mothers that follow the site to be the women that influence the workshops,” she outlines with determination. “I would like MM to be a community rather than all about me. I always remind myself that the faster they rise, the faster they fall.” Like the ever-expanding fan base, firmly in tow with their growing offspring, Jenny’s plans remain ones of natural growth: “The essence of MM is for it to blossom at its’ own pace.”

The Mother’s Meeting website aims to provide a forum for mums to indulge in conversation with like-minded women, who as Jenny so adeptly puts it, “Don’t just want to talk about nappies and nipple cream.” It has become somewhat of an eureka moment for creative London-based mums, and the positive feedback she has received has been in abundance. “I have had so many mums email me and say how great they think Mothers Meeting is, and that they are happy to feel that there are other mums out there with personalities and interests other than baby stuff that are dedicating their lives to bringing up a child,” she enthuses. “I think mums like to know that there are plenty of other mums in the same boat. Being a mum can be pretty lonely at times, that is why the key factor to MM is the meetings: getting mums out and about, away from being stuck at home and at the same time experiencing new places and people.” As Jenny states, life is completely different after having a baby. “But,” she adds, “It is in a way that you

JOIN THE CLUB AT WWW.MOTHERS-MEETING.COM

DEADS

65

tOCK


66

girls get busy

GIRLS GET BUSY ISSUE 2

DEADS

66

tOCK


67

For Beth Siveyer, her journey into the feminist movement began by working in a sex shop. Rachel Miles finds about how she creates her zine Girls Get Busy.

The colour pink has become a cultural concept in its own right: a signifier of gender, sexuality and fluffy princess fantasies. The particular shade used to print Beth Siveyer’s zine is pretty yet putrid. The curly moniker of its' logo has been offered free with the latest issue as a stick-on tattoo; cut and pasted flowers grow underneath a quirky character illustration, her ink pen-lined lips mouthing, ‘We are not sex machines. We are human beings,’ a clip stuck in her exaggerated hair. It is in no doubt a girls’ publication, and is produced gleefully aware of this; toying with contemporary notions of femininity with playful parody.

cut and pasted mash ups, bursting with uncensored outpourings from girls all over the world, an important network was created which underpinned the scene’s community. Fast forward almost twenty years and this still thrives, injected with the immediacy of the internet. The rise of social media has widened the access of Grrrl culture to any with internet access, but this by no means aided the abolishment of the medium of print, scrawled with its heartfelt messages and feminine rants. Beth expresses her love for the digital world with similar animation: “I love the internet! I wouldn't be able to have created my zine without it. There's a Girls Get Busy zine Tumblr, and the support I've received is so amazing. It's allowed me to find artists and writers, and of course the beauty of Tumblr is the re-blog button - you can post something and it'll be reflagged all around the world!” The Girls Get Busy Tumblr is part of a close-knit network of bloggers, such as ‘Fuck Yeah Feminist Art,’ produced to raise awareness of female and feminist artists for daily inspiration.

Beth began working at Sh! Erotic Emporium two years ago. Tucked away in Hoxton Square, the store was established as the first women’s only sex shop in the UK. It has since developed a glowing reputation for its’ friendly staff and open attitude: the offer of a cup of tea to sip whilst browsing doesn’t go a miss, and regular events such as their monthly support-group every last Monday of the month called Fannying Around peruse serious problems with extended arms. “I've always been interested in female sexuality, but was very aware from a young age that the sex industry is basically a man's world, which infuriated me,” Beth states. Sh! is the antithesis of this, and asides from the dedicated gentlemen-only nights from 6-8pm every Tuesday evening, men are only allowed access into the store if they are accompanied by a woman. Since working at the shop, Beth became increasingly interesting in the feminist movement, and her desire to create something positive grew.

Beth reaches out to this community when collating her zine. “I post an advert for submissions each month all over the internet,” she details. The monthly issues follow no theme, and they are tied together only by its wide selection and variety of art, photography, illustrations, articles from its’ contributors. Selling these online, trading mutual swaps or setting up tables at various club nights in East London, the zine is fronted by its’ own regular launch night created in celebration of the release of each issue, to the theme of the famed Riot Grrl bands Beth and her crew hold so dear, alongside pop favourites such as TLC, Destiny’s Child and Lil’ Kim, with classic 60’s girl groups such as The Ronettes thrown in for the mix. Beth’s clear ties with the thriving music scene saw the recent release of a retro classic mixtape – in this case, branded a Chix Tape – and the zine’s affiliation with all-girl thrash bands based in London such as Throwing Up keeps the momentum thriving. Already on its' fifth issue, Beth releases a new zine each month. The small pamphlets focus on topical issues inherent in young women’s lives. When flicking

“I wanted to make a zine for a while, but kind of lacked self-belief,” she reflects. “It was through my Tumblr that I met some really amazing girls that inspired me to be creative and made me realise that you can do whatever you want. With Girls Get Busy, I wanted to create a platform for girls to show their work and ideas about feminism, and for people to feel a part of something important.” The Riot Grrrl movement of the early 90's popularised the use of zines for creative expression, with seminal bands such as Bikini Kill selling their self-produced publications alongside other merchandise at their shows. Amongst these photocopied,

DEADS

67

tOCK


68 through, it becomes clear that body issues are the forefront, and attitudes to the removal of body hair and weight pressures are discussed with refreshing candour. Beth expresses her disdain at the current market of women’s publications available: “I hate the magazines that are aimed at women. Personally, I think Cosmopolitan is evil. It's constantly advising women on how to keep their man, telling them to practically change everything about themselves in order to keep him happy - whether that be your weight, your clothes, your body hair or your personality: because according to Cosmo and other women's magazine, we're basically nothing unless we're thin, attractive, in a couple and have the current trends in our wardrobes.” Media and societal pressures are also included. "I think it is outrageous the way the media and advertising pressures women, in fact television in general," Beth says. "There is so much 'reality' shit that seems to be really brainwashing the general public! There doesn't seem to be any strong positive role models for young girls in the public eye at the moment, and that really scares me.There are so many TV shows that completely glamourise superficial fame; like being famous is the most important thing, and it doesn't even matter what for! There are also tonnes of sexist music videos that keep the image of women only being sex objects, which teach teenage girls and boys that that's totally normal." Her arguments ring true, but the continued belief that feminism is due its course is biting at the heels of many activists heading these debates. A recent poll commissioned in honour of the 100th Anniversary of International Women’s Day found that nearly fifty percent of women do not believe they are treated equally to men. Yet according to this survey, only one in five women would identify themselves as feminists. It is evidenced that equality has not prevailed, but could feminism be losing its appeal to a younger audience? I ask Beth if she has experienced any reluctance from women not wanting to associate with the movement. “I’ve experienced the classic scenario of, "I'm not a feminist, but...” she says, highlighting the all too common retort reflective of a somewhat jaded generation. “It's like they're scared to be associated with feminism because it sadly holds this image of angry hairy man haters, which is obviously totally untrue!” Beth thinks it is sad more women aren’t interested in feminism, but she does not want to judge them for how they want to live their lives.Which is precisely why Girls Get Busy succeeds so well: it presents fresh and positive takes on female identity and sexuality in an open format, encouraging discussion and debate. “But, of course,” Beth reminds me, “Men can be feminists too. I have a few feminist male friends, as well as my boyfriend and I think it's really cool and it reminds me that we are moving forward!” Beth’s language is littered with sweet bursts of ‘cool’ and ‘totally,’ reminiscent of the perky attitude her zine proposes. But as the motto goes, never judge a book by its’ cover: this girl and her zine pack a punch with their bite, too. GIRLSGETBUSYZINE.TUMBLR.COM

DEADS

68

tOCK


69

5 FEMALE ARTISTS I LOVE AND WHY

Kathleen Hanna

She is my idol. She taught me about politics and feminism, and also inspired me to get into zines and to become a Riot Grrrl.

Kim Gordon

Kim inspired me to learn bass and made me realise that you should just be yourself and do things your own way.

Madonna

I grew up listening to my mum's Immaculate Collection and from an early age I decided that I wanted to be like Madonna. She really broke the mainstream with female sexuality.

Courtney Love

I spent most of my early teens listening to Hole in bed, screaming my heart out with the songs and fantasising about being in a band. Courtney doesn't take any bullshit from anyone, and turned her rape stage diving experience into something positive by writing the song 'Asking For It'. Rape culture is really important to me.

BETH TAKES TWO

TLC

TLC have always given a positive message and been good strong role models for young girls. I was gutted when Lisa Left-Eye died; I think they did a lot more for girl power than the Spice Girls ever did.

DEADS

69

tOCK


70

DEADS

70

tOCK


71 left to right: A DECADE ON — SAMIRA & ANGELA HAVE BEEN DESIGN PARTNERS SINCE 2001. ALL IMAGES COURTESY OF HJÄRTA SMÄRTA

hall of femmes

Want to work forever? These women do. Intent on finding graphic designers excelling far beyond their fifties, studio Hjärta Smärta — consisting of duo Samira Bouabana and Angela Tillman Sperandio — tell Rachel Miles about their journey to document the life and work of females overlooked.

DEADS

71

tOCK


72

Sometimes, Samira Bouabana and Angela Tillman Sperandio are still referred to as ‘The Wallpaper Girls.’ Coined after the production of wallpapers they created for their final project before graduating from the Konstfack graphic design school in Stockholm in 2001, their acclaimed designs won them numerous awards, and a mention – ironically, in hindsight – in Wallpaper magazine, which kickstarted their career in the design industry. Ten years later, they are still working together, under the name Hjärta Smärta, which translates from Swedish into 'Heart Pain.' They have progressed from producing wallpapers, although this didn’t stop a woman recently hunting them down for these after a ten-year pursuit, salvaging from the few rolls that remain in Angela’s basement.) Their latest project may help them to regain a new reputation. “We started to feel a need to see women that had worked for a long time so that we could see that it was possible to work forever if you wanted to,” Samira tells me. After slowly realising they didn’t know of many women to aspire to, Angela and Samira’s hunger for positive role models within their creative field grew. The plaguing absence of women from graphic design books didn’t help their case. “So we asked a lot of people for advice,asking if they could give us names of women that have worked for a long time,” Angela says. Everyone they asked responded as if it wasn’t a problem, but when it came to collating the answers, they encountered complications. “Then everyone was like, “Oh, but I have to think a bit — I’ll get back to you.” And nobody got back,” she adds.

Hjärta Smärta don’t believe in creating books in which the similarities between the work created lies only within the gender of the artist prodycing the work. Rather than create a seminal ‘female graphic designers’ book, they decided to offer each designer or art director they featured with their own personal book, or as Angela refers to it as, universe. “Have you discovered a certain ‘female aesthetic?” Samira asks me. “It’s so stupid. It’s very subjective, who we have chosen: it is people who we think do good work. We have a broad taste, so they’re very different.” There is also another benefit in structuring the project in this way, as Samira explains. “The reason we did the books like this — one person, one book — was because we didn’t want a close divide. We wanted to be able to continue to do the books or not continue; it’s an open end. We don’t want to say this is the final list.” One of the books they are currently working on is that of art director Lillian Bassman’s, a graphic designer in her nineties. Lillian began her career working Junior Bazaar in 1945 — the sister publication to Harper’s Bazaar, for teenagers — alongside Alexey Brodovitch. “He always gets the credit for the magazine,” Angela states frustratedly, “When I mean, they made it together! There were two art directors! Female assistants never got to have their name on the work, which is why you don’t find women in the history of graphic design: because they weren’t allowed to.”

“ F E M A L E A S S I S TA N T S N E V E R G O T T O H AV E THEIR NAME ON THE WORK, WHICH IS WHY YOU DON'T FIND WOMEN IN THE HISTORY OF GRAPHIC DESIGN”

So Samira and Angela started to research by themselves. “When you start to research the women you find, you feel really embarrassed that you didn’t know of them because they have such an impressive list of work. But it’s hard to find information,” Samira reflects, “They’re not out there in the same way. But when you see what they’ve done, you’re really surprised.” Angela agrees. “Often the work is really wellknown; it’s just the person behind the work who isn't.” Their latest project, Hall of Femmes, aims to bring female designers from older generations back into the spotlight, by creating books dedicated to their design legacy.

DEADS

72

Times have certainly progressed, and rightly so, but the industry still remains trapped within its' certified reputation of being male dominated. Visual arts specialist publication, Elephant, recently tackled the issue in an article titled,‘Beyond the Glass Ceiling:An open discussion between female graphic designers,’ in which designer Astrid Stavro drew attention to the gender disparity within the field. Although figures suggest that the proportionate figures of women and men studying at art school are now relatively equal, Angela thinks there are other things responsible. “I don’t think that the business is aware of this problem, because graphic design has always been very modern, and I think that the industry thinks that design is always ahead. But I think it’s the opposite, actually; I think it is really conservative in some ways. There are many old

tOCK


73

HALL OF FEMMES: THE SERIES SO FAR

ing on the negative aspects which have resulted in them remaining somewhat in the side-lines of traditional graphic hall of fames.“Many older men are happy to see that their colleagues who weren’t recognised before receive recognition," Samira states. It’s interesting to listen to people with a perspective. And all ages think that.This age problem, it’s a problem for men too,” Samira states. The universal appeal of the series is accentuated by the immense life stories these women have accumulated, offering a unique insight into a perspective gained when women were a vast minority within graphic arts careers. “I know people that buy these books and don’t have a clue about design and graphic design, but they read them as stories of a life,” Angela says.

structures within the business.” Samira and Angela are currently in New York, researching for their next release of Hall of Femmes books. I ask why they chose this city as their starting point, Samira responded with the fact that it was, in part, a coincidence. “It narrowed down to New York because most women over sixty still working and having been working consistently we found here. In Europe we found maybe two or three spread over England, Switzerland, France, Germany; but in New York we found many,” she states.“But I think that has to do with the history of graphic design, because after the Second World War so much happened in Europe, for both men and women. If you look at younger women you can find so many in Europe, but if you look at the older generation there aren’t that many.”

Angela thinks that there is a more women can do to fuel their creative careers. “I think women should be encouraged to start their own businesses, because many of the women that we met and interviewed have been working for themselves. I don’t think that’s a coincidence, I think that’s part of their success: that many of the women have been in a position where they can decide upon their own work,” she states. “I also think that women from different generations should help and encourage each other. That’s also part of this project: the question of mentorship, because men always have that and it is really important for your selfesteem,” she adds.

They met Lillian Bassman last week, who happened to be incredibly busy due to upcoming work projects. “Her assistant called us up and said “Oh, I’m sorry we have to make this really quick, she’s in the middle of a deadline.” That’s fantastic to hear,” Angela says, laughing as she recalls this particular conversation. Samira adds that Ruth Ansell, who is 75, also cancelled their meeting recently due to an impending deadline. Ruth, who debuted as a designer at Harper’s Bazaar in 1962, had never given a talk about her own career before, so Hjärta Smärta invited her to Stockholm to lecture at the Modern Museum of Art. “The tickets sold out instantly: we had to turn off our cell phones because people were calling like crazy,” Angela tells me. “I’ve never seen such a mixed when it comes to age: the young students were there, the old dinosaurs were there, and it was like a rock concert. It’s fantastic that an older woman can command that level of attention.” The Hall of Femmes books promote a positive approach which focuses on the seminal designers who have built life-long careers in the field, rather than fixat-

For their first international project, Hall of Femmes has been an immense success, and Angela and Samira plan to throw a release party for their third book, dedicated to graphic designer Paula Scher, a Principal at the Pentagram design consultancy agency, whilst they are still in New York. Who else is on their list? Their first choice is Margaret Calvert, the typographer responsible for the majority of Britain’s road signage systems. Margaret, of course, is quite young for her profession: she is only seventyfive. WWW.HJARTASMARTA.SE

DEADS

73

tOCK


74

A Female Point of View POV FEMALE — BRONWEN PARKER-RHODES EDITION

© DAMIEN POULAIN

POV Female presents an intimate glance into the life and work of 6 female London-based photographers. Rachel Miles meets designer and creator Damien Poulain to discuss the series’ expansion across the globe.

DEADS

74

tOCK


75

The female POV shot may spring connotations of a more intimate angle than what French art director Damien Poulain intended for his new book series. He is interested in a completely different level of intimacy altogether. His new series POV Female takes the work of six London-based female photographers and presents their work in a curated format. With a history in book design and visual communication,, Damien's interests range from typography and illustration to object-making: he possesses a wide skill set, but this project is a first for him. Printed by his own independent publishing house Oodeee, Damien tells me of his inspirations for the set of books. “I saw this as the perfect opportunity to become a curator and build a series of projects that I do care about and can manage from start to finish. Contemporary photography is my main focus and I want to do it well, with concept and meaning.”

His search for honesty saw him select the works based upon how loudly – or timidly — the images speak about the photographer’s inner self, their lives and how they relate to the world. “The projects retained are personal diaries, the reflection of someone's obsession, and the search to elucidate something deep and more meaningful,” he states. Having finished the London edition, which features the work of up and coming photographers such as Tara Darby, Briony Campbell and Bronwen Parker-Rhodes, he has plans to extend the project to the cultural capitals of Paris, New York and Tokyo. “The colour is pink for London but each city will have its own colour code so that they each have their own identities; setting all the publications under one big family."

“THE BEST THING ABOUT WOMEN IS THEIR ABILITY TO TA L K A B O U T T H E M S E LV E S AND GIVE T H E M S E LV E S A W AY WITHOUT SHAME”

Intending to offer everyone across the world partaking in the project the same set up and rules throughout, Damien asserts the simple nature of his project: “The idea is simple and should speak by itself when we see them working together,” he states. “Starting a series is a new experience for me, and I don't know where this is going to take me but having worked in London, it is exciting to discover the work of female Parisians orTokoyite photographers.I can already see the birth of cultural differences developing in what they are shooting.” Under the direction of Damien’s strong curatorial sensibilities, the vivacity bursting from the life and work of these women will certainly create a modest yet beautiful map of the world.

Having met countless photographers whilst living in London; from commercial professionals to photo-journalists and personal friends, Damien began to notice he had a particular attraction the work of female photographers. “Particularly,” he says, “the kind of intimate work that looks more like its capturing a private commitment and dedication than trying to produce something for public consumption. It’s this kind of personal diary approach that POV Female brings together; the intimate relation with the camera and the subject. POV Female is born because I know of my relationship with the photographers, but my taste and interest draw me toward this specific subject.”

POV FEMALE IS AVAILABLE AT KK OUTLET, 42 HOXTON SQUARE, LONDON. KKOUTLET.COM/ART

DEADS

75

tOCK


76

CRITICISM

REVIEW

Sasha Grey’s move from porn star to photographer may have shifted the power back into her grasp, but the camera is still firmly aimed on her. Rachel Miles reviews her new take on sex.

IMAGE COURTESY OF VICE BOOKS

DEADS

76

tOCK


77 watershed into blockbuster territory, Sasha fulfilled the rare dream held by many bourgeoning adult film stars in becoming somewhat of a household name. Interviews with magazine heavyweights such as Rolling Stone shortly followed, accompanied by the headlines, ‘Solving the world, one orgy at a time’ — the realms in which Sasha works are complicated.

Sasha Grey is on screen, and unusually for her, she is wearing clothes. She looks like any other fresh-faced American teen; inoffensive denim jeans, a saccharine pink t-shirt, her long brown hair tied into a low ponytail. Her demeanour retains the surliness of her age, and she smirks when she speaks, as if amused by a joke only she understands. Sat opposite Tyra Banks on her self-titled talk show, the newly appointed moral guide to the women of America can’t believe why a girl like this would pursue her chosen career choice. Neither can the audience, whose regular looks of disdain are interspersed with probing questions about anal sex, gangbangs and one particular tale involving faeces and a toilet seat. For the industry in which Sasha works is porn: that pertinently dubious topic within polite etiquette which remains mass-valued behind the glowing secrecy of one’s personal computer screen. It appears that the issue of adult entertainment – now openly discussed with such candour before lunch time – may not be as scandalous as a girl who entered the industry for no reasons other than naïve curiosity, personal exploration and an attractive pay check. Shock tactics as commonplace as the accompanying cups of tea poised in the hands of its viewers, the moral menagerie of daytime TV furore was applied to Sasha with full force. Advocates were invited to provide scathing criticisms upon their experiences within porn, to which Sasha was expected to emerge, metamorphosed with reflective remorse at working within an industry fuelled and supported by fragile women. But her steely manner and lax attitude towards the subject remained. Confronted with doctors, reformed sex workers, and the hawked glare of the top model who once brought the term ‘smiling with the eyes’ into popular refrain, Sasha was adamant she had no unfortunate tale curled back between the lengths of her past which had led to her chosen career, nor any bad experiences notched into her industry bedpost. She defiantly professes that this was a choice she made deliberately and one which remains affirmative. And who are we to judge?

Neü Sex, her photography tome from the publishers at Vice, was created from behind the scenes of the many scripts and sets she encounters in daily life. It began as what Sasha felt was a natural act of documentation, and with fiancé Ian in tow to share the camerawork, this daily ritual shortly amounted to a wealth of imagery ripe for publication and for the interests of her eagerly awaiting fan base. "There are so many photos of me, taken by other people, that aesthetically I have no control over. Documenting myself allows me to reflect on the day, on the feelings I am having, and on my environment," she states. "I figured that if I were on set, I might as well be taking advantage of my surroundings and documenting my life in an exciting, untraditional manner." Sasha’s work, by her own admission, is distinctly amateur in its' aesthetic. Echoing the camp visual rhetoric of the industry with a simmering sense of irony intrinsic to her character, she unabashedly presents the industry in glorified reality. Smudges appear in her heavy warrior make-up, a slight wear to her eye hinting at on-and-off screen action. In one photograph, her plastic futuristic silver underwear set strains as she extends her arms to turn the camera back on herself, a visual mirror to her exposed vulnerability. Her work challenges the idea that porn stars are restricted by passivity, albeit the fact her subsequent career move kept the camera focused clearly at her, merely swapping their control for hers. Acting as a sincere voice for the underbelly of the adult entertainment industry in which a slim picking of stars are willing to discuss their careers and beliefs with the same frankness they apply to their video roles, it is refreshing to witness someone so unafraid to challenge the steely opposition Sasha is regularly confronted with. Granted, her position within the industry remains one of privilege: her career is for fun and for money, and the darkest shadows of the business appear far from her path. But perhaps her voice may inspire those less fortunate to speak frankly about the industry, and this open rhetoric may help to impose safer rules and regulations to protect its' most vulnerable. For now, we have Sasha – steely, sassy, sure to hear from again.

Sasha’s career so far is a rare course of chance, opportunity and ruthless enthusiasm: at the age of 18, she ardently researched the industry for months. After looking up agents, references and companies with the audacity and drive drones of American teens apply to the Ivy Leagues, she contacted her manager directly, arranged a meeting, and uprooted from her hometown of North Highlands, California to LA instantaneously. Two years ago, Sasha was approached by Stephen Soderbergh to star in his 2009 film, ‘The Girlfriend Experience,’ in which he casted her as a sex worker specialising in PG-rated dinner dates as well as after dessert treats. After crossing the aspirational

NEU SEX, PUBLISHED BY VICE BOOKS, IS AVAILABLE IN STORES NOW

DEADS

77

tOCK


78

PHOTO BY RACHEL MILES

DEADS

78

tOCK


79

AGENDA

80

Politics: Reflections on Reinvigoration 84

Segregating Sexual Responsibility 86

Good Girls Gone Bad 88

Slutwalking: Why? 92

Women War Artists 98

Tracey Emin DEADS

79

tOCK


PO LI TI CS 80

DEADS

80

tOCK


81 COLLAGE BY RACHEL MILES

reflections

on

reinvigoration

DEADS

81

tOCK


82

Sarah Newton has spent the past ten years running her own youth consultancy agency. Politicians need to earn the trust of the younger generation, she tells Deadstock.

COLLAGE BY RACHEL MILES

DEADS

82

tOCK


83

SARAH NEWTON

P

oliticians are finding it increasingly difficult to reach the younger generation, entrenched in an on-line world; a world that most politicians simply don’t understand, or choose to ignore. Most of our current politicians come from a different era and a very elite section of society and are still mostly running on a very old ethos of “they should come to us.” They are finding it very difficult from what I see to engage in a collaborative way. They think that they need to have all the answers, rather than just asking the right questions.

I think politics is clearly lacking in female role models that seem real. But I don’t think it is just about getting a female politician into the limelight: it is about a female politician who can engage and understand youth, or even the parties having a policy to engage youth from the ground up.

People are facing an unprecedented crisis in employment and they want someone to give it to them straight. They want less pomp and more reality. They expect their politicians, however high up, to be accessible and answerable and I am sure the expenses scandal will have left a bad taste in their mouths. The youth will and can forgive and are a very trusting as a generation, but for that trust they Previously politics was the require scrupulous honesty and integrity; values which are vehicle for any social change: the internet has flattened held very dear. They understand all too well how things can hierarchical structures and decision-making processes, be manipulated and changed to suit the situation. Of course, meaning that actually anyone can get their voice heard people going back on their word will cause distrust, but I and make a change. The traditional structures and systems think it is more than that. no longer apply, or no longer seem relevant. They want politicians to tell them For politics to be inspiring to young up front what they can and cannot do. They would rather women it needs to reach out to them using social media. that politicians under-promise to then than never truly Politics needs to stop operating from a “top down” principle answering the questions that our politicians seem to be so and allow young women to speak out uncensored. Most good at avoiding. They want something more real: they want things produced from politics appear to have lots of rules and politicians to be honest. regulations, telling how things should be done. All they need to do is provide the platform and let our youth speak out for AS TOLD TO RACHEL MILES themselves. We need to tackle this with a youth-led approach, not an adult-led, many meetings and structure approach.

DEADS

83

tOCK


84

Lack of responsibility lies in our approach to sexual education, not in the restraint of young women

A recently passed government bill may see compulsory abstinence programmes added to the curriculum required for young women only. Rachel Miles explores the consequences of segregating sexual health.

DEADS

84

tOCK


85

D E B AT E

A

bstinence-only programmes have remained absent from the schedule of compulsory sex education in the UK in favour of a more realistic approach. Classes notorious for frankness and the iconic use of condoms and bananas as instructional apparatus, the necessarily awkward nature of the topic has long induced laughter and awkward silences. But in creating a gender-specific programme which places the burdens of sexual responsibility in the hands of young girls, we discount not only their personal desires as misguided judgement, but further reinforce a bleak attitude prevalent in society towards women’s sexuality.

side everything else, so that young girls can say I’ve been told to say no.” Her ten minute rule bill was passed by 67 votes to 61 in the commons last week, and it now awaits a second reading.

The fact that Dorries’ presumes teenage women do not possess the ability to say no already sets the tone of her campaign as immediately misguided. The evidence for abstinence preventing sexual infection or teenage pregnancy remains minimal, if not detrimental, as Simon Blake, Chief Executive of Brook Clinics, recently debated on an episode of BBC Radio One’s Woman’s Hour: “What we find from the research and what supporters on both sides say is that actually it The current programme doesn’t delay sex beyond an extensive succeeds in its aim to equip young period of time, and it doesn’t help people with the information necessary young people to look after and protect in order to protect themselves, leaving themselves if they do decide to have the responsibility firmly and reasonably sex. So essentially you can leave them in their hands. Conservative MP Na- more vulnerable,” he stated. A recent dine Dorries, who is heading the bill, study conducted in America supports reasons that by educating girls with this. It found that that youth enrolled in the same frankness in approach, it will abstinence classes were no more likely empower women to decline impending than those not partaking to delay sexual male advances. She urged other MPs to initiation, to have fewer sexual partners, consider the promotion of abstinence or to abstain entirely from sex. as a safe alternative to sex. As quoted in the Commons, she stated with fervour; The agency which results “We need to let young girls know that from making informed choices is a to say no to sex when you are under naturally empowering act. By introducing pressure is a cool thing to do. It’s as boundaries as vague as what is cool as learning how to apply a condom. perceived good or bad into the complex It’s as important as all the other issues realms of sex and relationships, it rids that they are taught in sex education an already difficult subject of the layered and I would say that it has to be along- multiplicity of human emotion and

DEADS

85

tOCK

complication. Utilising the education system to equip young women — and men — with as much information possible to make personal choices based upon their own educated belief system, will empower teenagers to make a decision based upon personal experiences, rather than a mere recital of an ‘I told you so,’ from Dorries. Blake highlights a different solution entirely, one based in fact, and devoid of social stigma. He states clearly:“There isn’t time in the curriculum [for sex education] and it doesn’t get the priority that it needs. Therefore what we actually need here is MPs to be saying let’s look at sex and relationships education as whole for boys and girls, young men and young women.” By making young women feel as though the responsibility lies in their hands implies an inherent sense of subjection to another sex’s needs and desires for sexuality. Placing undue emphasis on restraint suggests that women are passive respondents in their sexual lives and implies that all men’s actions are to be accepted and tolerated as ‘normal’ behaviour, never to be questioned. By equipping young men and women with the knowledge they deserve to learn on the issues at hand, and by teaching them in an environment that treats them as equals, the education system can aim to promote ideals which encourage positive sexual discourse to help both boys and girls in their life and relationships, based on their own situations, not Dorries’. JOIN THE DEBATE AT OUR WEBSITE, WWW.DEADSTOCKMAGAZINE.COM


86

GOOD GIRLS GONE BAD: What’s the deal with slut culture? Elizabeth Connor makes sense of the XXX that’s plaguing girls of today

The dawn of sexual liberation has certainly shed light on the female zeitgeist. In an age where S&M is touted as a record selling cash cow and Essex girls are stepping up to the plate to promote their ‘tart with a heart’ mentality, it’s hard not to forgive most women for leaving our sexual integrity in tatters. Seduced by the thrill of daring to bare and the titillating fantasy that glossy magazines and commercialized music have packaged into an easy-to-gain commodity, it seems the role of the sexual play-thing has never been more fashionable. Living in a culture obsessed with looking good and pandering to the male gaze has certainly made being a woman a hard and painful task.

wholesome Disney teen stars to FHM pin ups set the bar for future pop princesses who must flaunt more in order to titillate an over-saturated audience. A perfect example of this postmodern paradigm, Katy Perry,, the buxom Christian fallen-fromgrace, tells us it’s okay to kiss girls and like it. Surely as long as your boyfriend does too: wink wink! Similarly, Rihanna controversially lives up to her Rated R self-titled classification proclaiming whips and chains excite her whilst she fellates a peeled banana in her S&M video. Call me old-fashioned, but I don’t think ‘fan of casual sadomasochism’ is the message domestic abuse survivors should be sending to young women.

Waxed to the max and groomed within an inch of their life, the role models of the modern era don’t leave much to the imagination. Hell bent on seducing fans with their three minute soft-core pop videos, decked out in thigh highs and barely there’s, their writhing and romping would make even Russ Meyer’s Super Vixens blush. The transmogrification of nineties icons like (it’s) Britney (bitch) and Christina Aguilera from

The Guardian recently reported that 32% of girls in secondary education model themselves on the heiress and party girl to excess Paris Hilton: the closest thing mankind will ever come to bringing Malibu Barbie to life. Famous for being glamorous, going commando and a dodgy sex tape, this blonde airhead appears to be the poster girl for the modern gal’s ultimate career — looking good and doing little. Similar

DEADS

86

tOCK


87

feminist craze, allows women to protest against the stereotypes that exist from wearing effeminate clothing. Born from the outrage that sparked in January when a member of the Toronto Police claimed that dressing like a ‘slut’ can encourage rape, SlutWalkers march to eliminate slut-shaming – being judged by their sexuality and feeling unsafe as a result. Harking back to the dawn of the 1990’s when Bikini Kill’s Kathleen Hanna scrawled the word ‘Slut’ across her torso before taking to the stage, the movement attempts to dilute the derogatory term with visceral displays of female empowerment.

lines of work include WAGS, rock star’s daughters and reality TV contestants. This beauty before brains stigma that has infected modern culture has had a lasting effect on young women. Young female music artists in particular offer a misleading impression of autonomous, feminist agency; they are aggressively marketed as trendsetters and role models, and yet the fantasies they play out on screen are totally manufactured. As a result of this, a report by the American Psychological Convention found that mainstream pop’s sexualized output has an increased effect on young women, and can be linked directly with “three of the most common mental health problems in young girls – eating disorders, low selfesteem and depression”.

I may be wrong, but for me, Hanna is the type of revolutionary role model young women should be idolizing. Rather than constantly trying to live up to the misogynistic male fantasy, women should feel confident with the power their sexuality naturally bestows (think burning bras rather than throwing them into the audience.) Besides, haven’t we grown tired of the trash, sleaze and shameless posing of the new millennium? Sex just aint that shocking anymore. Isn’t it time to usher in a new type of sophistication? At a time where gender fascism seems more prominent than ever in the media industry, how great would it be for young women to close their legs and say no?

It seems that for all the titillating male fantasies of lezz-ploitation and deviance pop videos and similar media produce, it’s the women that seem to be unhappily chained to the role of the slut, feeling inferior in her impossibleto-fill fuck me boots. Rather than living out a fantasy, the slut persona is almost a chore. Have we really come any further from the stereotype of the doting wife washing dishes at the sink?The modern woman might not spend 2 hours doing the housework but she sure as hell spends 6 polishing herself to trophy wife perfection. Personally, it all seems a little degrading.

SLUTWALK LONDON WILL TAKE PLACE ON 11TH JUNE, 2011. WITH GUEST SPEAKERS AND MORE, THE MARCH WILL BEGIN AT PICCADILLY AND LEAD ON TO TRAFALGAR SQUARE. FOR MORE INFORMATION VISIT SLUTWALKLONDON.TUMBLR.COM

Battling against the slut connotations, a seriously eye-opening global movement is encouraging women to reclaim the word slut as their own. SlutWalking, a new

DEADS

87

tOCK


88

DEADS

88

tOCK


89

I AM WALKING BECAUSE I WAS RAPED, but that is not the only reason I am walking.

I AM WALKING BECAUSE TWO THIRDS OF PEOPLE WHO ANSWERED A SURVEY WOULD SAY I AM TO BLAME FOR MY RAPE: I WAS DRINKING. DEADS

89

tOCK


90

PHOTO BY RACHEL MILES

DEADS

90

tOCK


91

Why I am Marching By

Emily

Jacob

conviction rate. Women have a 1 in 24 risk of being raped in SlutWalk isn’t a feminist issue. Rape isn’t a feminist their adult life. (For men it is 1 in 200). issue. Rape is everyone’s issue. SlutWalk is about highlighting that it is never the fault of the victim and only ever the fault of A note on the figures: the Stern Report claims a the rapist. 58% conviction rate, which is based on the number of people prosecuted for rape. But the Stern Report also acknowledges Rape doesn’t define who I am. But it does that as few as 11% of rapes are even reported. Using constitute a big part of who I have become. It has changed figures from within the Stern Report, the facts are that if you the way I view the world and almost everything about me; it report a rape, there is a 15% conviction rate, but that of all has changed my family relationships, it has deeply impacted rapes, 98% of rapists walk away. The Stern Report calls these the relationships with my friends, it affects the way I handle discrepancies in reporting the statistics, the ‘attrition’ rate. stress at work. It’s changed how I trust (now I distrust). I move The Stern Report also recommends that the reporting of house like it’s a hobby, in search of somewhere to feel safe. I’ve statistics should be reviewed. overcome depression but it’s a constant cloud hanging over me. I worry about when the next panic attack will creep up on I am walking because I was raped, and because I me, whether tonight I will sleep, whether tonight he’ll come am angry. I am angry with what my life has become. I am so back, whether I will wake in fear. Rape is part of my life, every angry with the lack of justice, the hundreds and thousands of day. rapists who walk away. I am angry with media which perpetuates the urban myth that men might be in constant risk of being I am walking because I was raped. But that is not accused of rape and the idea that it is men who need protecting the only reason I am walking. I am walking because two thirds from vengeful women: when it comes to an accusation of rape, of people who answered a survey would say I am to blame the accuser is the presumed liar. for my rape. I was drinking. Perhaps I was drugged, I will never know. I am incredibly angry when I read that 64% of people I am angry because the survivors of rape are say I should take responsibility for my rape. The only person victimised again and again. If we report it (I did) we are forced to blame is the man who raped me. to re-live it in horrendous detail several times over. Our hopes are raised that perhaps a successful prosecution might provide Society teaches those two thirds of people closure (because at the time we think closure is possible). that it was my fault. Society teaches people that if you take And we feel violated again when the Crown Prosecution precautions you’ll stay safe; society lets women kid themselves Service decides not to prosecute after all and he simply walks that ‘it won’t happen to me’. Rapists are the bogey-man; they away. We are victimised when we stay silent and tell our work aren’t the internet date, the colleague, the boyfriend, the colleagues that we’ve got the flu, or a migraine, and that’s husband. Victims stay silent because talking about rape makes why we’re not at work – not that last night he came back people uncomfortable; it’s taboo. And victims stay silent in our nightmares and the idea of leaving the house is too because when they do talk about it, even ‘friends’ might say overwhelming. We are victimised when the doctor tells us ‘well, if you didn’t report it straight away you couldn’t have that if we’ve done our therapy, we shouldn’t still be suffering. been raped’ (no longer a friend). We are victimised when we are called victims. But rape is happening all the time. It’s happening We are not victims. We were victims, for every day. On average, there are 326 rapes EVERY DAY in a moment in time. Now, we are survivors. The one this country. Of these, only 2,021 result in convictions, a 2% positive thing I can take from the experience is that I have survived, I have had the strength to survive and I am a survivor. And that is why I am walking.

DEADS

91

tOCK


92

women at war

FRAUKE EIGEN, FUNDSTÜCKE KOSOVO 2000 - 'UNTERHEMD [VEST]' , 2000 © IWM

DEADS

92

tOCK


93

Fifty years ago, Imperial War Museum London held an exhibition with the meagre title, ‘Some Women Artists.’ After half a century of vast social change, Head of Art Kathleen Palmer is ready to tackle the subject again. There is more left to do, she tells Rachel Miles.

WOMEN WAR ARTISTS: WHY THE RELEVANCE NOW, AND HOW DOES IT DIFFER TO THE EARLIER EXHIBITION? It was different from the one in the 50's as that was quite narrow in its focus: it was actually called Some Women Artists, which is quite a title! This one has a more strongly feminist agenda from my point of view. There is an assumption of what women will or won’t do,professionally or otherwise, so I think there’s always been a desire to expose their work in the collection and make them more visible. We felt that it hadn’t been done for such a long time that it was right to do again. HOW DO YOU THINK THAT IT HAS CHANGED IN THE WAY THAT WOMEN ARE REFLECTED IN THE WORK, GIVEN THE MASSIVE SOCIAL CHANGES SINCE THE PREVIOUS EXHIBITION?

– some of the women who are in the show from the First and Second World Wars were quite prominent in their own lifetime, but actually have become a little bit overshadowed since. When you’re doing a snapshot about what was the leading edge of a movement, sometimes the women lose visibility when you write that sort of art history. HOW DO YOU THINK THESE EARLY INTERPRETATIONS — CREATED FROM WOMEN UNABLE TO FIGHT AT THE FRONT LINE — COMPARED TO OUR CURRENT CULTURAL CONTEXT, GIVEN THAT WOMEN HAVE MORE OF AN ABILITY TO SEE THE ACTION AS IT HAPPENS?

It’s about what women have done with the opportunities that have been presented to them: there were women artists writing requesting positions in Europe, there was an artist who kept writing requesting to be there for D Day. Women have consistently taken the opportunities that were avail There has been a lot of able and then done their own thing with change in terms of the museum’s own them. It is not that women commissioning: far more now go to women artists than would have done at artists didn’t want those opportunities; that time.Society has changed enormously, they just weren’t succeeding in getting and although I wouldn’t argue that it that access. I think now there’s more is now a level playing field entirely for of a sense of entitlement: society women artists, I think it is much closer has changed a lot and I think women to that now: there are far more really expect to be able to do things a lot prominent female artists who have a more. huge reputation on the contemporary MARGARET ABBESS WAS art scene. But sometimes it is about the CERTAINLY AN OPPORTUNhistory that’s written about that scene IST; THE ARTIST WHO USED DEADS

93

tOCK


94

TO SNEAK OFF TO THE TOILETS SECRETLY DURING HER SHIFTS TO DOCUMENT FACTORY LIFE. SHE ONLY DONATED THE WORK RECENTLY, IS THAT RIGHT?

World War. It’s both about their artistic style but also about what the subsequent propaganda use will be. When it’s unofficial it is a more immediate response to what’s going on around them.

Yes, in 2005 she gave those works. That was quite an extraordinary gift for the collection. Here was somebody who in the middle of her training as an artist, who was conscripted into war work in a spitfire factory. She wasn’t supposed to be drawing at all. For her, they were quite early in her career so she didn’t feel that they were artistically mature, so I suppose she’d had them as early work stuck away somewhere and hadn’t really thought about their worth to us in terms of a social document.

IT IS LESS CONSTRUCTED FROM ANY OUTSIDE PERSPECTIVE. WHICH WORK DO YOU PREFER? OR DO YOU NOT HAVE A PREFERENCE? IN A WAY THEY BOTH INFORM EACH OTHER.

Because the collection is founded on official war art it is always interesting for us to explore some of the unofficial work that goes alongside that; to get that different perspective into the collection is really important to us. DO YOU BELIEVE THERE IS MUCH DIFFERENCE IN THE WORK THAT WAS OFFICIALLY COMMISSIONED, COMPARED TO THE INDEPENDENT WORK? The bigger difference is between the commissioned and the un-commissioned than there is between the male and the female;it’s more striking. You get a difference in perspective, because in the First and Second World Wars there was a specific propaganda agenda.That’s how the war arts schemes are being justified, how spending on money on art during war time is being justified — it’s about morale, or persuading the Americans to join in the First

Yes, I think they do. I like both, for different reasons: I think you wouldn’t understand either so well without the other, because you really get a sense of the meaning of both of them. You understand what it means to be an official artist by looking at what you could do as being an unofficial artist. But the unofficial artist is such a contrast. It is small things that have caught my attention: it’s about the fact that in unofficial art people have a tea break, or they chat. And that’s not a valuable propaganda message! But none the less it’s extremely interesting to see that normal life continued, that people didn’t have their nose to the grindstone all the time and that not everybody was a model worker all of the time.

the Slade School, so they had the standing of having a good art education and already being successful in where they were exhibiting. The range of different artists starts to widen in the Second World War because there were more of them. There were so few being commissioned or having their work purchased in the First World War that they tended to be largely fairly successful, well-established artists. Obviously Dame Laura Knight was at the peak of her fame at that time, so she was actually dictating terms to the committee rather than the other way around. WHERE THERE ANY ISSUES THAT YOU WANTED TO PUT AT THE FOREFRONT OF THE EXHIBITION?

I think it was really important to me in getting away from this stereotype of the war artist at the front line; to look at the whole breadth of different experiences that people have in war time, because I think there is such a close association with being an artist at the front line that people forget about the wider impact on society of war, and that artists also deal with that. I felt it was really important REFERRING AGAIN TO THE to deal with the horror of war because COMMISSIONEES: WHERE I felt that it was something that people THERE ANY REQUIREMENTS might not consider in terms of women THEY HAD TO MEET, OR artists or that might challenge people. WHERE THEY FROM ANY PARTICULAR BACKGROUND? Part of me didn’t really want to have an exhibition that was They had a certain standing, just by women artists because I think and were already forging quite there is a danger in segregating, but at successful careers:AnnaAiry was showing the same time I thought it was really regularly at the Royal Academy; Flora important to bring their work to the Lion was also quite well known as a por- fore and make people realise that we trait painter, and they’d come through had this work and how good it was. DEADS

94

tOCK


95

FRAUKE EIGEN, FUNDSTÜCKE KOSOVO 2000 - 'UHR [WATCH]' , 2000 © IWM

“THE OFFICIAL COMMISSIONS DIDN'T ALLOW WOMEN TO GO TO THE FRONT LINE, BUT IT DOESN'T MEAN THEY WEREN'T THERE”

It was important to show that there have always been some women artists who got very close to the front line — including Olive MudieCooke who was an ambulance driver in the First World War — because I felt that would be unexpected to people. The official commissions didn’t allow women to go to the front line, but it doesn’t mean that they weren’t there. I think something that would be interesting to explore at some stage would be women artists and peace: looking at some of the movement and the artists who have gone alongside that. WHAT WHERE THE STAND OUT PIECES IN THE EXHIBITION FROM YOUR PERSPECTIVE? One of my favourite pieces is The Women’s Canteen, by Flora Lions. It is such a strong image of women as a sisterhood. I like the way that they’re looking out at you and there’s a real sense of self value: working in the munitions factories was a relatively well paid role and it did give women a degree of new found independence. It wasn’t necessarily that long lived but at the

time it must have been quite liberating. Women workers were banding together to press for equal pay with men and those sorts of things that we think of as coming much later. It is quite interesting to see that when there was that need for their labour that they were able to hold a much stronger negotiating position. IT IS INTERESTING TO SEE THE ROLE THAT THE WAR HAS HAD IN HELPING THE PROGRESS OF WOMEN'S STATUSES AND RIGHTS AND HOW THIS IS REFLECTED IN THE WORK FROM THOSE PERIODS. One of the things that I found really interesting for the First World War period was the close links between the women who ran the committee of the Imperial War Museum that collected the work and the women’s Suffrage movement: there was quite an explicit agenda in their collecting in justifying the vote for women on the basis of their contribution to the war effort. DEADS

95

tOCK

There tends to be a feeling that there were these great leap forwards for women in war time but there tended to be quite a backlash afterwards as well; it’s a sort of two steps forward one step back. IT WASN'T TRANSITION

A

SMOOTH OVERALL...

Exactly — it wasn’t like there was a great leap forward in the First World War and that was sustained. I mean obviously a proportion of women did start to get the vote in 1919, but because it was restricted to older women with property, it actually wasn’t necessarily the people who working in the munitions factories who were getting the vote. TALKING ABOUT THE MORE CONTEMPORARY WORKS: THE WORK OF FRAUKE EIGEN IS INCREDIBLY TOUCHING, IN THE WAY IN WHICH SHE UTILISES THE MEDIUM OF PHOTOGRAPHY IN A WAY WHICH DOES NOT CONVENTIONALLY SHOCK. WHAT


96

DO YOU THINK IT IS ABOUT THESE PHOTOGRAPHS WHICH MAKE THEM SO SUCCESSFUL; IS IT THAT THEY SUCCEED IN REPRESENTING HORRIFIC THINGS IN AN ABSTRACT WAY?

making it into the Royal Academy and getting the same training opportunities as their male counterparts. It is actually quite new for women to be really succeeding in an art career. Before that, you have some women gaining access to training and gaining Maybe it allows space access to a career in art but it for some imaginative empathy. If you wasn’t an easy ride; you can see present something that is so horrific through the different phases of the that people just turn away, then you twentieth century the continuing are not actually allowing somebody battle to achieve an equal status. to think through the implications of what is happening at war. Those There is also a sense that photographs really send a tingle down women might recoil from the horror your spine, and I think it is because you can of war, from combat or from blood. I almost put the person back into the suppose it parallels with the position of clothing; you can almost visualise them. women in the armed forces; they were Because somehow those sorts of so reluctantly accepted as auxiliaries personal items are so banal, yet here in the First World War, whereas now they are in this extraordinary situation. they’re in almost all of the armed forces. WHY DO YOU THINK There is a growing THAT THE ROLE OF A WOMAN understanding that women are actually AS A WAR ARTIST WAS SEEN strong enough to deal with these things. AS AN UN-STEREOTYPICAL When you look particularly at some ROLE FOR A WOMAN TO of the works in the exhibition when ASSUME, JUST AS IT WAS FOR A women artists are dealing with death WOMAN TO BEING WORKING and horror and imprisonment; for IN A MUNITIONS FACTORY? example, Doris Zinkeisen’s work on Belsen — the Human Laundry I think there is a long history painting — it is such a powerful statement. of women not being accepted as artists Women artists aren’t afraid to deal with that lies behind that. If you look back those themes and they actually do it very at what was happening before the First well. But I think that it is really down World War, it is only in the middle of to the stereotyping of women as not the 19th Century that women started so strong in dealing with these issues.

DO YOU FEEL THAT WOMEN ARTISTS ENCOUNTER ROUTE TO ACHIEVING RECOGNITION, OR TO BE EXHIBITED IN HIGHER INSTITUTIONS? I think you have to agree that that is the case. Certainly until quite recently, even if you look at the sort of statistics for the Turner Prize nominee winners, it’s not there yet. There are more women going into art school than men and yet at the top of the profession they are not represented in those proportions. I’m not prepared to believe that women are innately less talented as artists than men. It is still not a completely level playing field but I think the restrictions are getting less. HOW DO YOU THINK THAT WE CAN RAISE THE PROPORTIONS OF WOMEN IN THESE ROLES? I mean obviously you get female artists who really campaign on this, like the Guerrilla Girls, who were really making a point about how the system operates to disadvantage women. But I think that as you get a more equal balance of gender balance in art criticism and art dealers that there becomes a momentum. So, send your daughters to art school!

WOMEN WAR ARTISTS IS AT IMPERIAL WAR MUSEUM, LONDON, SE1, UNTIL 8 JANUARY 2012.

DEADS

96

tOCK


97

“ W O M E N H AV E C O N S I S T E N T LY TA K E N T H E O P P O R T U N I T I E S T H A T W E R E AV A I L A B L E A N D THEN DONE THEIR OWN THING WITH THEM”

DAME LAURA KNIGHT (RA), RUBY LOFTUS SCREWING A BREECH-RING, 1943.© IWM

DEADS

97

tOCK


98 IMAGES Š WHITE CUBE

TRACEY EMIN

Love is What You Need She's shown you her bed, her deepest secrets and now she wants to show you love. This summer art aficiando Tracey Emin presents a fully-fledged biopic of her work against the brutalist backdrop of the Hayward Gallery.. Notorious for catapulting working class women's woes into the high brow stature of theYoung British Artists, the show will feature all of her signature pieces: painstakingly detailed appliquĂŠd quilts, kitsch neon-lit signs displaying playfully tonguein-cheek messages and many of her lesser known works, including low-key drawings and personal sketches. Emin's shamelessly and prolifically bared personal approach to her work will be sure to deliver an emotional punch at the Southbank Centre this Summer. Book tickets now for the special screening of a selection of Emin's videos and films, including her feature-length movie Top Spot, airing on 20th August. LOVE IS WHAT YOU NEED IS AT THE HAYWARD GALLERY, SOUTHBANK CENTRE, SE1, UNTIL 29 AUGUST.

DEADS

98

tOCK


99

DEADS

99

tOCK


100

DEADS DEADS

tOCK

tOCK

100


DEADSTOCK Magazine: Issue One