2019 GIA Conference
Cultural Intersections
Denver, CO  |  October 13–16

From Surviving to Thriving

Forty years of feminist arts

Tuesday, October 15, 2:00pm – 4:30pm

Tower C

Organized and moderated by Kerry McCarthy, vice president, The New York Community Trust.

Presented by Debra Zimmerman, executive director, Women Make Movies; Erin Zona, artistic director, Women's Studio Workshop; and Idelisse Malava, consultant.

Over two years, four women’s arts groups (Women Studio Workshop, Women Make Movies, NY Women in Film & Television, and The Center for Women and their Work) met to explore how they moved from surviving to thriving over 40 years. The intrepid veterans of feminist social and political upheaval asked hard questions: “Are we still relevant?”, “What has changed for us?”, “How can we examine our collective history for lessons to help others?”. Founded as part of the 1970’s second wave feminist movement, each group responded to shifting social and political attitudes, built inclusive, expansive constituencies of women artists and patrons, and became living repositories of women’s artistic production – a history only now gaining attention/appreciation. This session will present their case studies of growth, survival, struggle, transition, blueprints for thriveability, and articulate the supports needed to stabilize women’s arts groups into the future.