Giving Compass' Take:
- Tess Lowery examines how the feminist exhibition “Hysterical” demonstrates the intersections of activism and art.
- How can donors support the work of artists of marginalized identities?
- Read about how art and activism can advance social justice.
What is Giving Compass?
We connect donors to learning resources and ways to support community-led solutions. Learn more about us.
“Cheer up love!” “Give us a smile.” “Alright sexy?”
If vomit just made its way up your throat, you’re not alone. Far from harmless banter, screaming at a woman from across the street telling her what to do is a form of street harassment — and it’s still legal in the UK. It’s also far from uncommon with around 97% of women in the UK having been sexually harassed.
Sexual harassment is part of a much bigger picture and feeds a spectrum of gender violence. While abuse, rape, and murder might seem like they’re miles apart from a “harmless catcall,” they exist on the same continuum.
Having experienced cat-calling herself, photographer and gender rights activist, Eliza Hatch, took the “cheer up” catcall and turned it on its head, metamorphosing it into a platform that aims to give power back to people who have experienced sexual and street harassment by documenting them in the settings where they were harassed or cat-called.
Since its inception in 2017, Cheer Up Luv has won awards, been exhibited worldwide, and covered by the likes of the BBC and Gurls Talk. It’s also blossomed into a creative community space for women and people of marginalised genders to reclaim their voices on a taboo subject, and a multimedia platform that facilitates a podcast, art, design, workshops, and lectures.
Around the same time, queer illustrator and multidisciplinary creative Bee Illustrates began posting their own artwork on Instagram — sharing distinctive, quirky illustrations paired with short educational essays on a range of important topics such as feminism, mental health, and queerness.
Read the full article about feminist art by Tess Lowery at Global Citizen.