Un mot vaut mille images
/ A Word is Worth a Thousand images
Fil de cotton sur toile de cotton / Coton thread on coton canvas
2019 - present
This piece is directly inspired by Caroline Criado Perez’s Book of the same name exposing the pervasive gender data gap. From medical and technology, to media and everything in our life, objects and surroundings, the biased data perpetuates a systemic discrimination against women. Half the population is thus deemed irrelevant to include in the data.
travail / invisible / labour
Invisible labour is "unpaid work that goes unnoticed, unacknowledged, and thus, unregulated".* Its burden falls predominantly on women. It is exacerbated by social-economic factors and cultural values that discredits certain types of work, but everyone can be subject to invisible labour. Artists and people in the creative field in particular are expected to do unpaid labour. This hurts the whole of society. A Universal Basic Income could be a first step to address this issue as it would shift our values to show that everyone in society has worth.
For more information
*Piñon, Natasha. "Invisible labor is real, and it hurts: What you need to know" https://mashable.com/article/what-is-invisible-labor/. Sept. 10, 2020. (accessed Oct. 19, 2020)
Based on a 2019 report by sociologist Taylor Whitten Brown for The Art Market using internal data from Artsy, median prices for female versus male works of art created after 1999 shows female works are worth 31% less than male works in North America*. The study gathered data from across the globe. In Africa and the Middle East, the gap is 10%, in Oceania, it is 16%, Asia and Latin America have a 22% gap, while in Europe, the gap is 26%. This shows that the gap in North America is the highest among all and that women's work is systematically undervalued.
The consistency of this wage gap appears in another study** that shows the difference in earnings between working men and women in Canada. If you add up the earnings of all working women, that sum is about 31% less than the combined earnings of all working men. For women of colour, the gap is 37.5%, while it’s estimated that Indigenous women earn a whopping 54% less than men.
*Brown, Taylor Whitter. "Why Is Work by Female Artists Still Valued Less Than Work by Male Artists?" https://www.artsy.net/article/artsy-editorial-work-female-artists-valued-work-male-artists. March 8, 2019. (accessed March, 28, 2019)
**McIntyre, Catherine. "These are the key numbers that explain the wage gap for women." Macleans.ca. https://www.macleans.ca/society/pay-equity-statistics-canada/. Feb 8, 2018. (accessed April 29, 2019).
HOW DARE YOU
Everyday is Earth day. In the midst of a health crisis, let us not forget the climate crisis. This embroidery took me a year to complete and was inspired by Greta Thunberg’s speech at UN Climate Action Summit in September 2019.
Here’s the transcript:
"My message is that we’ll be watching you. This is all wrong. I shouldn’t be up here. I should be back in school on the other side of the ocean. Yet you all come to us young people for hope. How dare you!
“You have stolen my dreams and my childhood with your empty words. And yet I’m one of the lucky ones. People are suffering. People are dying. Entire ecosystems are collapsing. We are in the beginning of a mass extinction, and all you can talk about is money and fairy tales of eternal economic growth. How dare you!
“For more than 30 years, the science has been crystal clear. How dare you continue to look away and come here saying that you’re doing enough, when the politics and solutions needed are still nowhere in sight.
“You say you hear us and that you understand the urgency. But no matter how sad and angry I am, I do not want to believe that. Because if you really understood the situation and still kept on failing to act, then you would be evil. And that I refuse to believe.
“The popular idea of cutting our emissions in half in 10 years only gives us a 50% chance of staying below 1.5°C, and the risk of setting off irreversible chain reactions beyond human control.
“Fifty percent may be acceptable to you. But those numbers do not include tipping points, most feedback loops, additional warming hidden by toxic air pollution or the aspects of equity and climate justice. They also rely on my generation sucking hundreds of billions of tons of your CO2 out of the air with technologies that barely exist.
“So a 50% risk is simply not acceptable to us — we who have to live with the consequences.
“To have a 67% chance of staying below a 1.5°C global temperature rise – the best odds given by the [Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change] – the world had 420 gigatons of CO2 left to emit back on January 1st, 2018. Today that figure is already down to less than 350 gigatons.
“How dare you pretend that this can be solved with just ‘business as usual’ and some technical solutions? With today’s emissions levels, that remaining CO2 budget will be entirely gone within less than 8 1/2 years.
“There will not be any solutions or plans presented in line with these figures here today, because these numbers are too uncomfortable. And you are still not mature enough to tell it like it is.
“You are failing us. But young people are starting to understand your betrayal. The eyes of all future generations are upon you. And if you choose to fail us, I say: We will never forgive you.
“We will not let you get away with this. Right here, right now is where we draw the line. The world is waking up. And change is coming, whether you like it or not.