It Starts in The Streets

The panel will open with a spoken word poetry performance by Staceyann Chin. 
When “La Brique”, a name adopted by two young graphic designers, wanted to change consciousness in Rennes, France, they made night raids, and replaced some of the very many street signs bearing men’s names with signs bearing women’s names instead. When the Guerilla Girls wanted to protest the almost total exclusion of women artists from museums in the U.S., they created posters and graffiti with the question: “Must a woman be nude to get into the Metropolitan Museum of Art?”  Other signs declared: “MoMA is a female impersonator.” Change starts where people are, and people are in the streets, as shown by movements such as Black Lives Matter, Women’s March, Femen, as well as the many forms of street art that are displayed in our cities.
This panel will explore the vibrant, outrageous, imaginative, verbal and visual ways that big changes have begun in small places, both through activism and through the arts. Reflecting on the changing nature of public spaces—both physical and digital—it will also brainstorm on how to do this in the future.
Religion is a major force in political life, yet we are not supposed to discuss—or even name—its influence. This panel will go where others fear to tread. In their desire to control reproduction, patriarchal religions have sought to control women and viewed them as a threat to their power. Religious political influence is a challenge to the separation of church and state—a unique and apparently still radical distinction made by the framers of the U.S. Constitution and a cornerstone of the French Republic. It is also an internalized problem for women and men who have been raised in patriarchal religions. Now, more than ever we need to expose the politics of religion, yet also preserve each person’s right to her or his spiritual beliefs.

This event is part of Festival Albertine 2017. All events are free and open to the public. Seating is limited and available on a first come, first served basis

Houda Benyamina is a film director and screenwriter. Her César- and Cannes Camera d’Or-winning film, Divines, follows young women from the outskirts of Paris who use violence and grace as means to achieve their goals. She actively works toward gender equality in the film industry through her organization, 1000 visages.

Tania Bruguera is an installation and performance artist whose works exposes the social effects of the power of political force. She participated in the Documenta 11 exhibition and established the Arte de Conducta (Behavior Art) program at Instituto Superior de Arte, Havana. Her work has been exhibited at the 2015 Venice Biennale, among other galleries and museums. 

Marie de Cenival is a former Act Up activist and founder of the radical feminist action group, La Barbe (The Beard), which denounces white men’s monopoly on power, prestige and money in France. De Cenival is now Senior Gender Advisor for Heartland Alliance International, a U.S.-based human rights organization.

Staceyann Chin, a writer and activist, has received several awards including the Power of the Voice Award from The Human Rights Campaign, the Safe Haven Award from Immigration Equality, and Honors from the Lesbian AIDS Project. She unapologetically identifies as Caribbean and Black, Asian and lesbian, a woman and a resident of New York City. She is also the author of the memoir, The Other Side Of Paradise

Janisha R. Gabriel is a developer, graphic designer, visual artist, and life-long organizer, who has been involved in numerous social justice initiatives, centering on efforts to advance Black liberation, gender justice, and LGBTQ equity. Janisha is a founding member of the Black Lives Matter global network and lead design and communications for the Network’s first 18 months. She is the founder and owner of Haki Creatives, a boutique design agency located in The Bronx, NY. Janisha is also founder and Executive Director of the Gather Together Project, a database documenting violence against Black women and girls.

The Guerrilla Girls are feminist masked avengers in the tradition of anonymous do-gooders like Robin Hood and Wonder Woman. Using facts, humor and visuals they expose discrimination and corruption in politics, art, film, and pop culture. They undermine the idea of a mainstream narrative by revealing the subtext, the overlooked, and the downright unfair.

Elizabeth A. Sackler, PhD is a public historian and arts activist. She is president of the Arthur M. Sackler Foundation, trustee of the Brooklyn Museum, founder of the Elizabeth A. Sackler Center for Feminist Art, and produces the program series, States of Denial, currently focused on state-sanctioned violence and mass incarceration.

Watch this event live via Livestream on Nov. 5 at 3:30pm (EST). 
Festival Albertine is made possible with major support from The Recanati-Kaplan Foundation, Susannah Hunnewell, Van Cleef & Arpels, Air France, Fondation CHANEL, and Institut français. Generous support is provided by Champagne Pommery and Intercontinental New York Barclay.

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