THAT LADY THING
That Lady Thing had popped up in my Instagram a few times recently and I found it a bit difficult to know what exactly it was. I'm a lady. I like things. But what is it?!? Their site says they are "part speak-easy, part speak out" so I RSVPed to the launch event to find out more.
Honestly, I was a bit skeptical at first. Though I think it's important to bring to light "feminist" issues, it has become such a buzz word right now (hence the quotes). I assumed This Lady Thing this was going to be just another Insta-worthy installation aimed at likes, shares, and hashtags BUT this one has some substance behind it. TLT started as a one night pop-up in honor of International Women's Day and uses interactive exhibits to highlight gender issues. You can hop into the Sea of Objectification (AKA the titpit). The message -- women are not play things and the tides are changing. Reach the top of the corporate climb or grab for what you can in the money booth since the wage gap is REAL.
The final installation, Wallflowers, is a series of selfie-approved wallpapers designed by female artists that defy gender norms, celebrate diversity, and encourage women to lift each other up. Shout out to ma friend Lucy Litman for her contribution, A Lot of (eggplant emoji) Out There, which shows the percentage of men to women in the upper echelons of the work world. Yikes!
When I left, I felt like "Yah, we know! There is a lot of gender bias. You are preaching to the choir here." I wanted more action and didn't necessarily see how pointing out these statistics were empowering (mostly just felt depressing!) BUT the redeeming quality of TLT is that all profits benefit women's organizations like the National Women's Law Center. I think they hit the mark of providing an experience that people feel good about giving their money to and even though there are corporate sponsors, I get the necessity of having their involvement to be able to pass along the proceeds. My final verdict is that you should go see this but know that taking a selfie isn't taking action. The install runs August 5 - 9 at The Great Northern (119 Utah St., SF). They have plans to take in on the road and I hope that these facts/statistics may speak to other groups (who don't live in our Bay Area bubble) and that it may create some impact and empower women in other areas.