Earth / Mother Portfolio

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Earth/ Mother is an exchange portfolio that was organized for the 2020 Southern Graphics Council Conference to be held in San Juan Puerto Rico. The conference was postponed because of the COVID- 19 pandemic. The inspiration for this portfolio came out of current events around women’s rights and climate change, Hurricane Maria, which had devastated Puerto Rico just the year before, an interview I had heard between Amy Goodman and Eve Ensler and Christine Schuler Deschryver. Some of these things were coming out in my personal work and I thought as a portfolio theme this would be timely, considering that the conference was to be held in Puerto Rico.

This portfolio considers the intersection of women’s rights and environmental issues. The simultaneous assaults on the environment and women’s bodily autonomy create an interesting parallel. We hear the same male politicians argue one day that women do not have the right to choose what happens to our bodies and the need to allow drilling and mining on protected land the next. What do these issues have in common, especially when we see that the aggressors in both cases are largely the same? How does the destruction of the earth in pursuit of fossil fuels relate to the need to control women’s bodies? What are the internal conflicts involved with motherhood when fervent climate change denial is creating an ever more uncertain future for life on this planet? How does the fervent denial of climate change relate to the recent spate of bans on abortion and rape apologia in the US? How does the way a culture treats women and the environment manifest in society? What is the relationship between the earth’s ability to create and sustain life with that ability within women?

Participants were asked to use the above questions as inspiration and to interpret the theme in their own way as long as they are considering the intersection of women’s rights and environmental issues. Artists were encouraged to use more than one printmaking process in their work at least one of which must be a handmade process (no purely digital prints). The combination of multiple print media was an interesting way to explore the overlapping nature of this theme.

The portfolio artists are:

Hannah Adair, Breslin Bell, Kala’i Blakemore, Laura Byrne, Cynthia Lollis and Daniela Deeg, Elizabeth Castaldo, Sue Carrie Drummond, Brandie Dziegiel, Jamie Lee Girodat, Anna Brooke Greene, Nicki Koning, Tikva N. Lantigua, Heather Leier, Melissa Mandel, Lujan Perez Hernandez, Hailey Quick, Ashley L. Schick, Catherine Stack, Kaleena Stasiak, Bryn Sumner, Becky Thera, Kylie Millward, Rosane Viegas, and Tammy Wofsey.