On t’watch | Montreal Anti-Street Harassment Posters

 

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These amazing posters have been popping up around Montreal. Since I’m a hermit I haven’t seen them myself but several friends have been posting the ones they saw to Facebook and Instagram so I decided to check out the on t’watch blog where you can see them all.

Instead of an about page, the main page of the blog displays the project’s intentions (a perfectly chosen bilingual word):

“Around the corner, leaving our homes, on route for work, never safe from the looks and the unwelcome comments that make you feel small. A walking piece of meat, of course they feel entitled to look and comment. We are taught to live in fear, always threatened with the possibility of being assaulted and never offered any tools to deal it other than ridiculous advice (never walk anywhere alone at night, don’t wear skirts, and lately, don’t take a taxi by yourself if you happen to be drunk, etc) that serves to reinforce rape culture and put the onus on the victim instead of targetting the rapists. Thus, perpetuating notions that it is normal to be accosted, that it’s in men’s nature, implying that certain behaviors are to be expected in public spaces.

The simple and oft banal fact that we are regularly bombarded with sexist ads and imagery condition our behaviors. Objectified, commodified, used to sell the norm, why is anyone surprised that most of us regularly experience sexual harassement and/or racism in the streets of Montreal? These experiences that are systematically invisibilized, denied, normalized; they are our daily experiences which we so often deal with in silence, unsure of how to respond. A symptom that indicates that our dealings with the Other are still tied up in the dynamics of domination that are easier to name than to deal with […]”

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(cont.) ” Unlike urban and street art, this project is one of reappropriation of the city not one of revalorizing or embelishment. Making these power dynamics visible, naming them, acknowledging that they exist, also allows for them to be destroyed little by little.

This is an invitation, to all people who are tired of feeling like a walking piece of meat, all those who dont know how to respond to those entitled morons’ gaze and comments, to any person that is sick of being a “victim”.

Here is your invitation to reappropriate our spaces, to create an environment of confidence to take ‘the power back, one of solidarity, but more so to reitirate that it is not our responsibility to alter the way we dress, where we walk, at what time, with whom, how we hold ourselves, who we look in the eye and how we are walking. It’s not up to us to fix our behavior, CONTROL YOURSELF YOU FUCKING ASSHOLES, and shut your mouth.” 

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Amazing stuff! I love that this blog is bilingual and that the posters each have an english and french version!  The proje(c)t page of the blog is also worth checking out.

They remind me a lot of Tatyana Fazlalizadeh’s amazing Stop Telling Women to Smile project posters, which I’ve just realized I never posted about! I’ll be sure to make a future post just on her work which I’m so proud to have on my own walls at home.

VIA ontwatch | blog féministe / feminist blog.

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Nude Portraits by Trevor Christensen

 

Trevor Christensen’s nude portraits might not be what you expected – the models aren’t the nude ones!

According to the Utah-based photographer’s Artist statement for the project: 

“As a photographer I’m deeply interested in the experience subjects undergo as I take their picture. When I guide subjects through the portrait process I seek to create a calm, comfortable environment where they can be at ease in front of the camera. Despite my best efforts, subjects often feel vulnerable during the process. No matter the scenario, this power imbalance is almost inescapable part of the experience. […]

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[…] The photographer/subject paradigm is one of inequality. Nude Portraits is about leveling the playing field in an unorthodox way. Instead of focusing on bringing the subject to a place of ease–where I am, this project brings me to a place of vulnerability.

This vulnerability is achieved by making portraits without clothing. These are nude portraits in the sense that I, the photographer, am nude, while the subject is not. […]

Nude Portraits by Trevor Christensen

[…] Nude Portraits explores what happens when subjects are confronted by male nudity in a context devoid of eroticism. Nude Portraits also examines the experience of photographing subjects in a heightened state of vulnerability. Images of the photographer nude are not included in the series, leaving viewers to speculate on what the subject is reacting to. […]

Nude Portraits by Trevor Christensen

[…] Aside from my being nude, portrait sessions for Nude Portraits are like any other shoot. A session generally lasts around forty minutes. Often that time is spent with the subject exploring our mutual, or sometimes solitary, unease. Subjects are made explicitly aware beforehand that I will be photographing them nude. They understand that they may feel uncomfortable, but they should not feel unsafe.

Portrait locations range from the workplace to the backyard to the bedroom. As spaces in which subjects are likely to be at ease, these areas provide an appropriate and contrasting backdrop to the tension that a nude portrait session often creates. […]

Nude Portraits by Trevor Christensen

[…] Nude Portraits is an ongoing conceptual portrait photography series. All are invited to participate, however, I am particularly interested in documenting as diverse a range of subjects as possible.”

Check out Christensen’s website for more info and nude pictures.

Via Utah Photojournalist.

“In bed, everyone’s able.” – documentary on Sex and Disability

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The Last Taboo conveys a captivating and comforting story of six people with different physical disabilities and a fit partner who was in a relationship with one of them.

These persons share their outlooks on affection, connection, friendships, relationships and, according to their experiences, they share what they’ve learned about themselves. Basically, the overall idea of the film is that… “In bed, everyone’s able.”

The problem with the word “disability” is that it has a negative connotation from the get-go. It automatically implies that there’s something that somebody “can’t”, or something that somebody “isn’t”, and that becomes defining, foundational definition of the way somebody thinks of somebody and then it spills over everything including sexuality.

People will look at something and they’ll think it’s beautiful if it falls under certain guidelines and that is what puts so much stigma on the idea of someone with a disability being a sexual person, because people can’t quite connect the dots between the idea that someone has a non-normative body or presentation and the fact that they might be sexual.”

Via topdocumentraryfilms.com