Artist's Statement on the In Whose Defense? Series
From Weinstein, Cosby, gun violence, Trump’s locker-room talk to Devos cutting back sexual assault Title IX policies, In Whose Defense? questions how contemporary culture is attempting to stop violent and sexual assaults on women, people of color, immigrants, and the queer community. By stitching every modern item or product produced to stop violent and sexual assaults, the series aims to examine the true nature of these self-defense products. Do these products protect the predator or prey? Do they really provide a sense of safety or perpetuate fear? Is it fair that these weapons put the responsibility to stop violence on the shoulders of its victims? And at what point is self-defense just the continuation of a culture of violence? What is the best approach to stop violence? I want the new series to provoke conversations about the responsibility to stop violence and the nature of existing efforts to curb it. I believe firmly that the nature of these questions and the art relate to the nature and efforts of the #metoo movement and all that it aims to upend and amend. Also, in connection to #metoo, I've discovered that the medium's physical softness and its unthreatening stereotypes and the open intersectionality of the artwork encourage viewers to share their own stories related to these items and their own #metoo moment. It's been a really moving experience to listen to so many stories of survivors and those who constantly live under the fear of rape watch.