F.I.G.A is the last Alys’s initiative and it is planned as a one-year-long project; F.I.G.A. aims to create connections and support the development of women and women-identifying artists of all ages in visual arts with a special focus on non-UK-natives photographers. Through insights and partnerships with local and foreign communities, institutions and organizations I wish to build up a net to work with artists and creatives, contributing to strengthening the foundations of the international trans-feminist visual culture, ideas of cultural fluidity, and sisterhood.
The goal is to face the problem of women’s cultural production dramatically underrepresented and undervalued by claiming, conquering, and reappropriating our online and offline spaces. Counting and quantifying won’t solve discrimination, direct action and support will.
Data analysis of 18 major U.S. art museums found their collections are 87% Male and 85% White. Source: Chad Topaz, Bernhard Klingenberg, Daniel Turek, Brianna Heggeseth, Pamela Harris, Julie C. Blackwood, C. Ondine Chavoya, Steven Nelson, Kevin M. Murphy. “Diversity of Artists in Major U.S. Museums,” Public Library of Science (PLOS). Published March 20, 2019.
THE F WORD
The name figa is a strategic choice to address questions such as taboos, abuse of female specificity a reductive, or offensive adjective. This choice is a positive reappropriation of a word:”Figa” is an Italian controversial word because it can be a vulgar form to refer to female genitals (main use), but it can also be used as a word of appreciation: here the word FIGA acquires the meaning of “cool” so “questa cosa è figa” literally means “this thing is so cool”. It is an ancient word also mentioned in Dante’s Inferno as a gesture made with two fingers in V position
Inferno XXV 1-4.
“Al fine delle sue parole il ladro
le mani alzò con ambeduo le fiche,
gridando: Togli, Dio, chè a te le squadro.”
So the word “Figa” sounded perfect for taking a risk with a radical idea to work against the traditional and damaging/limiting elitarian and privileged structures. Here the feminist practice is to be intended as a tool capable of question visual art, reclaim space for identities and gather them into politically challenging visual production, proposals, and research.
Feeling very strongly the legacy of the artistic Historical Avant-gardes, Guerrilla Girls and the hidden history of women’s culture, FIGA affirms that the commodification of art neutralizes the sense of the creative work, erasing the polemical and irreverent impact it can have on society and making it a mere marketable product for the upper class.
FIGA refuses the artist as an individualistic concept, the cult of the ego-artist and practice; instead, FIGA embraces the belief that art is a group tool, which must become a political in terms of cultural and structural change and revolutionary affirmation.
FIGA embraces artistic activity, research, and developing in an transnationalistic sense and crosses all the arts with dense interweaving between one art and another. We welcome networking and collaborative practices/opportunities around the UK and abroad.
FIGA rejects the cult of capitalistic modernity and the concept of stereotyped beauty: beauty, being everywhere due to industrial technology and democratization of the means of visual production, has transformed everything into art and, consequently, has killed art.
FIGA rejects patriarchy in all its forms and works to consolidate the girl gaze visual production.
- Bring together women artists – supporting, developing, and disseminating visual culture created by women of any culture and background. The project will be a safe space for artwork focusing on social and political confrontations, and personal/practical growth.
- Bring together female collective knowledge and practices in order to trace a common cultural line building a solid structure for a future art collective
- Create an archive of space’s activities and outcomes
freely accessible to the community.
- Include women with disabilities not only as independent projects,
but actually including them in the regular activity.
- Become one of the reference points for women photographers from the Mediterranean area.
- sustainability of the piece of art
- Collective Projects and Open Calls
- Young Girls and Schools’ Involvement
- Workshops and Laboratories
- Talks and Meetings
- Thematic Insights
- Visual Analysis sessions
- Art production and selling
- Support groups and collectives working within countries with political and dictatorship issues
- Artivist performances
- Alternative art networking:
this atelier is thought to develop a fairer and equal way to intend art and its educative and relational function in society, out of the mainstream and capitalistic art production logic. Promoting reflective practice instead of compulsive production.
- Interaction with more London based established women networks, where the studio/atelier will be headquartered, and also international research, allowing the opportunity for residencies.
- services to the local community
Tate: what does it mean to be a woman in art?