International Women's Day: New Art Project 'Stop Telling Women to Smile' Tackles Street Harrassment

08 March 2014 by

You might have heard that today is International Womens Day. To highlight this day, our coverage in Grazia has been fairly extensive. Today we are tweeting Womens Day facts on the hour all day, are bringing you the latest on the call to arms by Angelina Jolie, Keira Knightley and Salma Hayek and are celebrating our favourite female comedians.

We also wanted to draw your attention to a US art project that is tackling gender-based street harassment in an ingenious way. Women across the world deal with harassment on a daily basis, garnering unwanted and sometimes threatening attention from men in public areas.

Created by Brooklyn-based artist Tatyana Fazlalizadeh, 'Stop Telling Women to Smile' attempts to turn places where women feel uncomfortable or unsafe into places where they have a bold presence.

[Tatyana Fazlalizadeh]

The artist is travelling around America, photographing women and listening to their stories about harassment. Their images into large-scale posters featuring hand-drawn illustrations and messages like 'My outfit is not an invitation', 'My name is not baby' and 'Women do not owe you their time or conversation'. They are then plastered on the wall in public places where women have been approached.

The project started in Brooklyn in 2012 and is currently on show at the Betti Ono gallery in Oakland in California. Tatyana plans for it to travel to other locations - including more and more cities and women's voices. She sees it as a way to both tackle street harassment and examine the experiences that women are having with local communities.


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