[March 2015, Milwaukee] Over a nine-month period, 25 female artists and poets partnered with another woman in the community to learn about the defining experiences of her life. Each artist then became their partner’s medium, creating original work to share and honor her story. MY SISTER'S STORY was the culmination of those partnerships.
A series of corresponding events, held during Women's History Month, was meant to spark conversation about how women relate to each other and demonstrate the power of mutual support and coalition-building among women in the ongoing fight for gender equality:
Art Exhibit Opening Party | March 21st, 2015
Spoken Word & Music Showcase | March 27th, 2015
Intergenerational Women's Dialogue | March 29th, 2015
Of the Art:
To counteract the prevalence of competition among women and "mean-girlism" by demonstrating the power of reaching out, listening to and empathizing with other women.
Of the Dialogues:
To shift relationships of mistrust, defense or withdrawal among women to those of curiosity, connection and compassionate understanding of differences.
Of the Post-Dialogue Data Report:
To identify barriers to coalition-building among women and share them publicly; to name the problem so we can begin to solve it.
Of All “My Sister’s Story” Efforts:
To spark stronger, more proactive female-to-female alliances in order to increase momentum toward achieving gender equality worldwide.
+ 750 community members attended the MY SISTER'S STORY events.
+ NBC TMJ4 did a feature story about the project, highlighting a survivor of human trafficking and the artist who told her story through a painting that now hangs at Convergence Resource Center, a local nonprofit that helps survivors rebuild their lives.
+ Wisconsin Senator Tammy Baldwin recognized the project in a video message thanking FROM HERE TO HER and all involved for using creativity to promote gender equality.
+ Based on what we heard in the intergenerational women’s dialogue (facilitated by the Zeidler Center for Public Discussion) we recognized a need to bring this message of unity to an even younger audience. As a follow-up to the project, we developed a student version which we've since facilitated at schools and youth non-profits.
+ A book highlighting “sister’s stories” from the project was created and published in early 2016.
Jeanette Arellano, Jasmine Barmore, Nova Czarnecki, Marcela "Xela" Garcia, Rachel Hughes, Rosana Lazcano, Tazia LeMay, KAB, Katie Mullen, Jenna Van Ornum, Miranda Petroviak, Tia Chianti Richardson, Racquel Racadio, Carol Rode Curley, Kerri Root, Symphony Swan, Valaria Tatera, Missy Ziebart, Mikey C. Apollo, Shalina Ali, Stephanie Latona, Tiffany Miller, Brit Nicole, Savannah Pyatt, Wanda Richards-Miller, Jessica Namaste (DJ Venus), Dayzhane Andersen, Nicole Newson
The Isabel & Alfred Bader Fund, Brewers Community Foundation & Alverno College