“Aboveground—40 Moments of Transformation” ——A photography exhibition of young feminist activism in China

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“Aboveground—40 Moments of Transformation”

A photography exhibition of young feminist activism in China

(9/23-9/27, 2015, 3:00pm-7pm)

Reception: 9/24/2015, 4:30pm-7pm

The Clemente Soto Vélez Cultural & Educational Center (The Clemente)

LES Gallery, ground floor 107 Suffolk Street NY, NY 10002

F,J, M or Z trains to Delancey/Essex Street. Main entrance on Suffolk st.

(btw Delancey and Rivington)

We are thrilled to announce “Aboveground—40 Moments of Transformation”, a photography exhibition of young feminist activism and the struggle for gender equality in China. Co-hosted by China Rights in Action, Feminist Task Force, and Asian American Arts Centre, the opening reception will take place on Thursday, September 24, from 4:30-7 pm. Guest speakers will begin at 5pm.

Feminism calls for freedom from restrictive gender roles and for gender equality in the realization of social, cultural, economic and political rights. “Aboveground—40 Moments of Transformation” documents young Chinese activists’ impressive efforts to combat stigma, discrimination, and violence against women in pursuit of these ideals. These activists use public spaces as their battlefront to gain visibility and spark open dialogue. But, in China’s repressive environment, bringing the fight for gender equality above ground comes at great personal risk. This exhibition frames and explores the determination with which these young feminists are pushing for a China with true gender equality.

Background information:

In 1995, 189 governments came together in China and adopted the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action. These documents were a remarkable milestone, committing to a vision for women and girls of equal rights, freedom, and opportunities in all spheres of society and of lives free from want, fear, and violence. Two decades later, ironically, feminists and lawyers in China who fight for such equal rights are subjected to search, harassment, and even detention. On March 7, 2015, the Chinese government detained five women activists on the eve of International Women’s Rights Day for their efforts to call attention to sexual harassment. The women received an outpouring of support from feminists, women’s groups, human right organizations, and politicians around the world. But dark clouds are still gathering inside China. Although “The Feminist Five” were released after 37 days, it was conditioned on a strict form of bail that limits their movement, associations, and speech, and they are still treated as criminal suspects by Chinese police.

On September 27, UN Women and China are co-hosting a “Global Leaders’ Meeting on Gender Equality and Women’s Empowerment: A Commitment to Action.” China’s President, Xi Jinping, will give the opening remarks and chair the first part of the meeting at the UN. While this political gesture will be welcomed by some global audiences as a sign of China’s progress, in reality, women’s rights in China will remain in peril as long as those who fight for them face violence and persecution.

Please RSVP to aaacinfo@artspiral.org

For press inquiries, contact aaacinfo@artspiral.org

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China Rights in Action is a nonprofit organization formed by journalists, writers, scholars, human rights activists and volunteers. It was founded in New York, USA with mission of protection of Chinese rights defenders and strategic and tactical training in non-violence activism.

Feminist Task Force is The Feminist Task Force (FTF) was launched in March 2005 when leaders of international women’s rights groups gathered in New York City for the annual meetings of the UN Commission on the Status of Women. The global launch marked the start of a new alliance aimed at ending poverty among women and putting gender equality at the core of poverty eradication. Established under the umbrella of the Global Call to Action against Poverty (GCAP), the Feminist Task Force focuses on the importance of framing poverty as a women’s issue and calling for “Gender Equality to End Poverty.”

Asian American Arts Centre promotes the preservation and creative vitality of Asian American cultural growth through the arts, and its historical and aesthetic linkage to other communities.

We appreciate The Clemente for its generous support

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THIS PROGRAM IS SUPPORTED, IN PART, BY PUBLIC FUNDS FROM THE NEW YORK CITY DEPARTMENT OF CULTURAL AFFAIRS IN PARTNERSHIP WITH THE CITY COUNCIL; BY THE NEW YORK STATE COUNCIL ON THE ARTS WITH THE SUPPORT OF GOVERNOR ANDREW CUOMO AND THE NEW YORK STATE LEGISLATURE.

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