debtOr in the coming weeks, passers-by in 12 U.S. cities, many of them in states where access to abortion is shrinking or dwindling, will report clear and strikingly positive responses to the U.S. reproductive health crisis. you will see the message.
In Louisville, Kentucky, abortion rights are being voted on this week’s poll, with two pink stethoscope strings in the shape of a womb. In New Orleans, a billboard shouts “Thank God for abortions” in all black and white, with an angel flying from the upper right corner. Atlanta hosts two of his most watched mid-races of the year, highlighted by the text “ABORTION IS LIFE” composed of tropical flowers against a backdrop of lush foliage.
In all, 14 billboards form the exhibition “Vote for Abortion Rights,” curated by Swedish-American conceptual artist Michele Pred and Brooklyn-based nonprofit SaveArtSpace. His installations by 10 different artists, including Pred, allow viewers to express their anger, indifference, despair, or confusion over the erosion of access to reproductive health in the United States in this month’s ballot box. is encouraged.
Pred had the idea for the project in May. At this time, a leaked draft opinion all but confirms that the Supreme Court will overturn her 50-year-guaranteed abortion rights in Roe v Wade, as it did at the end of June. rice field. Her 6-3 vote of a conservative majority in the Dobbs vs Jackson Women’s Health Organization delegated reproductive choices to state governments, some of which immediately outlawed all abortions. was.
Since June, 18 states have banned abortion either by banning it or by hastily passed restrictions. Five more states put abortion on the ballot in this week’s midterm elections.
Roadside advertising is often a tool to convey a conservative message. It’s probably the most famous billboard in my home state of Ohio, where interstate highways are dotted with Christian fundamentalist signs and access to abortion is blocked by court injunctions. Pred recognizes common billboards as “incredible public art that reaches out to a very large audience,” she told The Guardian. People who don’t go to museums and galleries, they’re a large part of the population.”
Whether on the highway or in the neighborhood, billboards “are one of the most democratic works of art because everyone sees them,” she said. With over 400 artist submissions, the goal of the project is to help conservative voting blocs or minority-ruled governments, such as Arizona, Texas, Louisiana, Wisconsin, Georgia, Nevada, and Tennessee, provide access to abortion. It was to physically deliver the message in threatening states. Kentucky. Participating artists include Bud Snow, Holly Ballard Martz, Rainy Baby, Lena Wolf and Hope Men, Shireen Liang, Viva Lewis, Wildcat Ebony Brown and Yvette Molina. Pred, whose curation of that project coincides with her recent show Equality of Rights in New York, also has an installation that is a photograph of a purse adorned with 1973 when Law was determined. 46th and 12th Avenues.
Pred installed art explicitly related to reproductive justice near her home in New York and Oakland, Calif., but was wary of “preaching to the choir,” she said. “I promised myself that I would do more work in these other states that matter most. It might make you think.”
That’s why Pred deliberately chose artists whose designs were “neither violent, nor angry, nor bloody.” Fear of going back to his Roe days before dangerous locked rooms and self-administered abortions. “It doesn’t inspire anyone. It doesn’t change anyone’s mind.” While such images are emotionally accurate, they do not “represent the negative image they are presenting to us.” It reflects. It’s the misleading anti-abortion imagery of bloody fetuses and hellish denunciations seen along many highways in the United States.
The design of Vote For Abortion Rights presents a positive reframing of abortion as healthcare, as freedom, as life, rather than a campaign attacking ads supporting choice. Thank God for the abortion, says Viva Lewis’ New Orleans billboard, which shares the catchphrase for her activism. “It might be a way to encourage some people to think differently. I wanted to put out a sign that would make people who might vote against abortion think in a positive way.”
Not all signage operators, a mix of national chains and local businesses, accepted the message. London-based artist Shireen Liane wanted her design of “Abortion is medical” written in green letters on an American flag to be installed around Phoenix, Arizona. , the design was only approved by a company in Las Vegas. I admitted that I was out of control. “The goal was to get them on their feet as best they could across the country.”
Whether it’s catching the eye of motorists or encouraging reproductive rights advocates to get on the ballot in the midterm elections, Pred says the nationwide project will provide significant momentum to staunch anti-abortion legislators. and hoped things could get worse. Get better. “I am very concerned that there are still not enough women who are going to vote, who are going to vote,” she said. “This is an abortion rights emergency right now.”