[Photo by Mary Engelbreit]
The work of a feminist can be hard and tiresome. Afterall, that equal pay isn’t just going to hand itself over. That’s why music, art, comedy, theater, dance, and more can be healing and reinvigorating. Protest art has been around for a long time, from Picasso to Willie Bester, so in this time of political unrest, we wanted our favorite feminists to show us the protest art they’re enjoying.
What is your favorite bit of protest art?
Melissa Landrigan: “One of my favorites is “The New Revolutionists,” a series of black-and-white portrait photographs by Laura Burhenn, a musician more commonly known as The Mynabirds.” (Read more about Landrigan’s thoughts on protest art at The Rumpus.)
Amanda Deibert: “My favorite is pretty obvious, as a woman who writes Wonder Woman comics, married to a woman who draws Wonder Woman comics with a daughter who is obsessed with Wonder Woman … this one speaks to my heart in a myriad of ways. Especially because Wonder Woman’s message is TRUTH above all else, and right now truth is absolutely what we need in order to resist. We all need to fight with and for all the truths we hold dear. (Also, for the record, I am very pro punching Nazis.)”
Mayim Bialik: “Full disclaimer: The following artist and I share the same parents. Combining traditional Jewish papercut art with a love and use of comic books as the backdrop for simultaneously delicate and powerful messages, Isaac Brynjegard-Bialik, in his upcoming exhibition at Brave New World Comics in Newhall, CA examines prominent women from Jewish texts and transforms them into something much bigger and more colorful – using comic books as the backdrop, both literally and figuratively.
‘Twelve Tribes’ converts the Biblical 12 tribes into 12 gorgeous images of powerful women — and some men — from the world of comic fantasy. All of them are heroes of color. The featured heroes in this series are Black Panther, White Tiger, Shaman, Storm, Vixen, Ms. Marvel, Luke Cage, Simon Baz, Moonstar and Sunfire, America Chavez, Vibe, and Katana. Here’s a sneak peek of them from Brynjegard-Bialik’s studio:
People ask him a lot why so much of his art revolves around representations of women. “I used to say that I’ve got a wife, and three daughters, and so… But I recently changed my answer. Now I say it’s because I’m human — because these aren’t issues for just women or women-adjacent folks to tackle; it’s about making society truly equal, which is something we all need to work on together. I see people who fear and mistrust anyone who’s not just like them, but my idea of America is a place where our differences make our country stronger and better. My versions of the twelve tribes incorporate minority superheroes as an exploration of the diversity of voices that make up America. It’s about acknowledging the strength and power of each of us to be a hero.”
I love seeing men joining this protest with their art — and their hearts.”
Have a question for our ragtag group of raging feminists? Send it to Avital Norman Nathman at TheMamafesto@gmail.com and it might just be answered in a future Feminism 101!