Last Tuesday, I was thrilled to discover that I’d been selected as one of the recipients of the IdeasTap “Ideas Fund Innovators” prize. The brief was to submit a pitch for a creative arts project, along with a budget and timeline, that wouldn’t be possible without the help of £500 extra funding. My pitch was for an exhibition I’ve had planned out for months, one that exhibits another side of my work that hasn’t been highlighted much on this blog so far, entitled Public Property.
I haven’t had the chance to hold an exhibition since 6th form, when me and the rest of my photography class were given the opportunity to exhibit our work at a “Man vs the Environment” themed exhibition at a local arts hub. I never had the money to take part in any exhibitions during university, and even missed out on the end-of-year exhibition that was supposed to display all graduating students’ work – and that would have cost me hundreds of pounds. And I’ve certainly never had the chance to host an exhibition that consists entirely of my own work, so I’m really excited and nervous to get started.
Due to all the work, planning, publishing, and building (yes, building) that has to be done, the exhibition is predicted to take place some time in February of next year. In the meantime, I’ll be updating you all with pictures, videos, and promotional material on this blog and via Twitter. I’m really hoping for the opening night to be a real event, with wine, speakers, and a nice big crowd. And that’s not me being narcissistic – I’m intending for the work that I display to carry some real messages, and the more people that see it the better.
Here’s the pitch I submitted:
Public Property will be a feminist exhibition featuring work that discusses modern culture with regards to marriage, rape, and body ownership. The work being exhibited will be created by myself, and will include: several photographic collections – one looking at body ownership, one focussing on forced marriages, and one that explores rape culture; an installation, which will take the form of a badly-made Wendy house, within which there will be video and voice recordings playing; and a self-published zine. Public Property will be exhibited in a local gallery in Norwich.
As well as that, you may have noticed further down on my blog that I have a call for submissions for a zine under the same name. The plan was always for the zine to be distributed at the exhibition, so I advertised for submissions preemptively, hoping that I would receive funding sooner or later. Now that I have, the zine will act as a way for other people to exhibit and display their work at the gallery – click here for details!
According to my timeline this next month is supposed to be spent getting together the photographic material, and compiling stories for the voice recordings to be played in the Wendy House. The aim of the voice recordings is for them to juxtapose against images and videos of modern rape culture (i.e. music videos, television representation), and so I’m looking to get examples of people’s experiences with rape, sexual violence, or sexual harrassment. Obviously this is a sensitive subject, so if you have something you want to share but aren’t comfortable sending me a recording of your own voice, simply send over a transcript that I can have a voice actor read out. And, of course, all submissions will be anonymous and will be treated with strict confidentiality. The stories will only be used for the exhibition, and will never be used without your permission. If you are interested to submit your story, be it a recording of your voice or simply a transcript, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
And, as always, thanks for the support. I hope I can count on you all to support and promote this exhibition as and when it happens!
In the meantime, and on a completely different note, I am closing applications for Parallel Magazine THIS FRIDAY, the 1st of August! Parallel Magazine is a startup feminist magazine, and I’m looking for photographers, writers, illustrators, graphic designers, and researchers to make up the original team. For more info, click here! As I said, submissions are closing on Friday so you only have 4 more days to get your application in.