CTFU Investment Pitch Proposal @ Local Project Gallery Queens June 15, 2019

Back to the Future is a provocative evening of performance art on Saturday 9/15/19 7-9pm curated by Matti Havens including: Marie Christine Katz, Felix Morelo, Coralina Rodriguez Meyer, Susannah Simpson, Joseph Sledgianowski, Furusho von Puttmakker

Local Project Art Space is located at

11-27th 44th Rd – Long Island City, NY 11101
Between 21st and 11th Street 
Take E,M,G or 7 train to Court Sq

RSVP @ Eventbrite

The performance artists in Back to the Future aim to inspire thought and discourse and encourage the debate about new ways forward, ones that are progressive, inclusive and frequently surprising. They construct new visions of what may lie ahead and examine how our current technology and political ideas will affect our future. This diverse group of artists seeks to present ideas outside of the existing capitalistic and patriarchal systems that dominate the world today. They also seek to examine our chaotic present in order to envision a diverse future. These key ideas are addressed with drama, humor, satire and metaphor and allow the viewers time to contemplate the challenging ideas presented.

The cumulative affect of the artists’ perspectives and experiences form a multi-faceted idea of our collective future. A discussion of our current administration’s anti-immigrant stance and the repercussions of climate change form the core of Coralina Rodriguez Meyer’s deadpan and subversive presentation. Susannah Simpson explores the future of embodiment as relates to the growing, changing Earth, social consciousness, destruction, multiplicious revolution, technology, the future of love, and the future of sex. Concern about our collective future is a common theme that most of the performers address. Marie Christine Katz’ performance is based on sentiments shared by participants during public actions that began on the first day of the new administration. Felix Morelo confronts viewers with both performance and ephemeral chalk drawings on the street to express our hopes and anxieties for the future. Furusho von Puttkammer, as her alter-ego Anchovy, manifests our feelings of frustration through a distinct and concrete performance. Joseph Sledgianowski onsets our contemplation of these emotions and concepts with a deep and introspective distortion of time and perspective with an abstract sound performance. The accumulation of the varied approaches to performance and the broad scope of ideas presented by these adventurous artists makes for a thoroughly provocative investigation of the troubled times to come.
– Matti Wim Havens

Coralina Rodriguez Meyer’s City of Today for Feminine Urbanism (Femilia) performances are satirical reenactments of patriarchal, urban design allegory and structural erection. During the Back to the Future program, her Ethnic Ethics performance (in the form of an investment pitch proposal) will imagine a dystopian, historic fiction where children’s concentration camps are immigrant purification superstores, Poststructuralism reads as a border-crossing Palimpsest and participants can escape rising seas in weightless cities. Previous Investment Pitch Proposals imagined the City of Today for Feminine Urbanism as a 1:100,000 scale model of a woman’s body as chocolate cake to be divided and conquered by participants in the vein of Hitler’s division of the Baltic region in geographic black forest cake. Over the past decade, the City of Today for Feminine Urbanism has been performed in bank vaults, conference rooms, vacant construction sites, city parks and on the streets to reclaim the didactic as sites for political critique.

Coralina Rodriguez Meyer is a Andino-American, Brooklyn and Miami based artist who translates structural violence into minority heirlooms. Raised queer between the rural South and Caribbean; Coralina mends her indigenous, mixed-race, Latinx identity into suffragist masterplans. Coralina’s background in urban design and architecture informs her work. Her research based practice manifests in sculptural, digital, performance and social practice forms. She performs her citizenship by engaging viewers to builsd their humorous, hysteric future from a minority GPS. She began building the City of Today for Feminine Urbanism (Femilia) in 2009 to propose intimate solutions for urban scale problems. Her works are made in the lineage of her Andina ancestors as navigational tools to survive American Mythology. Manifestations of her sculptural work include IUD/IEDs scaled to the Statue of Liberty’s uterus; Building Tampons in S (Liberty), M (Chrysler), L (Empire State), XL (WTC) absorbency, and suburban Uterine Cul de Sacs with fallopian tube poolside lounges. Her most recent Cunt Quilt project transforms worn out women’s underwear into city flags at intersectional protests.

Coralina studied painting at Maryland Institute College of Art and completed her architecture BFA at Parsons The New School (2004), and Combined Media MFA at Hunter College CUNY (2013). Coralina held fellowships at the Artist’s Institute NY, SU Florence Italy and the UDK Berlin to study Nazi utopian urban design with Hito Steyerl and Gregor Schnieder. In 2012 she researched her Inca heritage at the Museo de Sitio Machu Picchu fellowship, to create works connecting the Quipu social structures to North American iconography. She has been a resident of Mildred’s Lane and the Bronx Museum AIM program. Coralina received awards from VSA Arts, the Kennedy Center, NYFA, Scholastics and Young Arts. She has been featured in the NY Times, the Guardian, London Review of Books, Village Voice, Hyperallergic, Paper Magazine, Univision, Nylon Magazine and Jezebel. Coralina’s work has been exhibited at Queens Museum, Bronx Museum, Miami Art Museum, the Smithsonian Museum International Gallery, Miami University Museum, Kunstlerhaus Brethanien Berlin, NYU Kimmel Center, Bitforms, Andrew Edlin, AIR gallery, KMAC Museum and the Corcoran.

CTFU on Building Ethical Communities panel at Pratt Brooklyn March 1, 2019

A frigid afternoon in Brooklyn at Pratt, MFA and MA students gathered for the Summit Conference featuring a panel called Me Too: Building Ethical Communities moderated by feminist artist Elaine Angelopoulos. Joined by Sara Reisman from the Rubin Foundation, feminist artist Rebecca Goyette and Sophie Sandberg of Catcalls NYC, I spoke about a decade of the City of Today for Feminine Urbanism and its current Cunt Quilt iteration.

Addressing the transformation of the NYC art world from the 1980s to today, Elaine highlighted emerging and forgotten voices in her decades long effort. The panel was heartwarming, but most of all when an MA student preparing for a career in the museum track approached me about her life-threatening bout with ovarian cancer this past year. Her emphasis on describing her genitals as “disgusting” and “disturbing” were heartbreaking. We spoke for about an hour about her experiences. She was quivering in tears when she admitted her shame and insecurity around her private parts and that she was inspired by the openness of the Cunt Quilt project to seek professional psychological help in overcoming her reproductive and social anxieties. It was the most impactful experience I’ve had presenting this project to date. I have been accosted during protests, questioned by others on the other side of the aisle, and witnessed young girls giggling and then kicking their legs in the air at the quilt yelling “Yas Queen!” but never, have I imagined that the project would speak so directly to an individual’s struggle with her privates.

I’m deeply grateful to the Pratt community for opening their institution to this important dialog. The abject nature of the project makes it difficult for organizations to highlight its importance, but I am reassured that our culture will shift towards a more inclusive view of intersectional feminism.

Cunt Quilt in Referentin Journal Berlin March 2019

Pussy Hats and Cunt Quilts

By  Sarah Held   / March 1, 2019

Sarah Held reports on feminist protest practices, current discourses, aesthetic-cultural interventions and, among other things, strategies against the Locker Room Talk.

Stitch'n'Bitch: This is not about needlework.  Photo Coralina Rodriguez Meyer

Stitch’n’Bitch: This is not about needlework. Photo Coralina Rodriguez Meyer

Sexualized violence against women – for more than 40 years this has been called for by various feminist (protest) groups (1). A simple and clear message is also that skin color or social origin as well as the gender associated with the birth should not play a role. Sounds quite understandable, even if that was not always on the agenda of feminist movements. However, the demand of a society without sexualised violence in patriarchy is rather utopia than usus.

Social changes can be sought from different perspectives. Within feminist protest practices, the lever is also used inter alia with contemporary interventions against sexualized violence (relationships) from an artistic-feminist position in order to realize the utopia of a world without sexualized violence to some extent. In the foreground are actionist art forms that work with textile displays, known as Critical Crafting, in (partly) public space and thus appear in the pop discourse.

The Pink Pussy Hats, which subvert the misogynous statements of current US President Donald Trump and became the symbol of resistance to contemporary feminist protests in pop culture, are presented as examples . When writing about the pop culture phenomenon of the Pussy Hats,meaning pink wool caps on women’s right demos, it is essential to reflect critical voices regarding this headgear as well as the representation practice in the context of the 2017 feminist demonstrations.

As a visualization strategy of common intentions, the Pussy Hats have appeared as a by-product of the Women’s Marches taking place in the Global West in January 2017. (2) These are handcrafted pink wool hats with cat ears that visually and linguistically use the term Pussy . They were created as visual metaphors to protest the Trump’s so-called Locker Room Talk .

This phrase refers to a conversation extract between Donald Trump and journalist Billy Bush of the Washington Post. It contains misogyny statements and shows the deeply sexist habitus of the US president. (3) The phrase “tomb ’em by the pussy”, resulting from the “easy talk of the lords”, went viral and was taken up ironically by feminists. During the demonstrations, the Pussy Hats served as a visual cipher for protesting the Women’s Marches (4). The demonstrations were criticized for maintaining a white difference feminism in which only the group of white middle-class women could be portrayed. Black women, Women of Color,Transgender women and other marginalized and intersectionally affected women’s groups would (again) not be considered by the feminist mass appeal. For example, bell hooks and Angela Davis made a great deal of attention in the 1970s to these invisibility and exclusion mechanisms. Your criticism regarding the above exclusion mechanisms is still current. There were also absolutely legitimate criticisms regarding anti-Semitist positions by co-organizer and spokeswoman Linda Sarsour. The sake of completeness called, but no longer be taken up.

The above-mentioned criticism of feminist protest practices in the US is transferred to the Pussy Hats . They, too, are denounced for standing for exclusive feminisms, because due to their color only white women would be able to enroll in the pink resistance symbolism. Furthermore, it was emphasized that they are trans-exclusive, as not all women read as women have a biological vulva or vagina; Thus, the term Pussy for this group is also discriminatory. (5) However, this criticism can be easily deconstructed from the aesthetic-visual language level, because the politics of visual culture function differently than individual political approaches. The pussy hatsact as a visual unification strategy of the different concerns of the subjects who want to rebel against Trump’s sexist statements, no matter what skin color and no matter which gender was assigned to them at birth. It must be asked in this discussion, whether now jointly against phallogozentristische discourses is intervened or the diversely structured category of women * should be visualized, especially as it is the visual return coach is an ironic statement that would not work if the term Pussywould not be picked up. In order to stay with the mechanisms of visual culture, the “power of evidence” 6 can be argued here: the sea of ​​pink caps, to which the individual subjects merge, stands for a large mass, visually clearly as opposition to Trump, on behalf of heterocentric sexism in patriarchy, positioned. As an allegorical function in feminist protest, an intertextual work of imagery and text (“grave ’em by the pussy”) is completely interdependent. This means that the subversive affirmation visualized by wearing pink cat caps could not materialize without naming the term. Especially since the criticism, the pink hue would stand exclusively for the vulgarities of white women and the termPussy excludes trans persons, as to the allegory function of the Pussy Hats while wearing on the demo because of the ambiguity of the term is obsolete. In the ambiguity is the potential, because finally with the cat ears also clearly on the less vulgar connoted meaning of the Pussy term alluded .

As another example of artistic activism to highlight social ills, mention should be made of the Cunt Quilt , which also revolts against Trump’s misogyny using visual language armaments. The New York artist Coralina Rodriguez Meyer called on the Internet to send her underwear to make the Cunt Quilt, in Stitch’n’Bitch sessions. (7) The artist also encourages her addressees to submit the very dirty specimens wet with various body fluids. Her mission is to collect such long-worn linen and show it publicly in the Cunt Quilt until there is a president in the US.

The Cunt Quilt thus stands in the tradition of abject art practices, as they were implemented especially in the 1970s in the context of the second women’s movement by artists such as Ana Mendieta or Cindy Sherman. Abjection derives from French and means meanness or depravity. The Abject Art often works with disgusting substances such as feces, (menstrual) blood, various body fluids and provokes by these transgressive practices of socially accepted expectations provocative taboo breaks. The mentioned art practices are often provided with attributes such as “disturbing” and “irritating” or simply “disgusting”, but can still be interpreted as witty. Also the Cunt Quilt is in the course of theLocker Room Talks was created and used for demonstration purposes in public spaces at the Women’s Marches . Thus, the practice can be read as a performative “dirty laundry” to draw attention to sexism and misogyny through artistic action in public space.

The presented artistic interventions are thus understood as an amalgamation of different discursive strategies which, together with further socio-cultural or even legislative interventions, want to create a structural change in the current state of society: Equal coexistence of the sexes, without biological determination, sexual violence or class violence. or ethnic discrimination. The demand is actually not that utopian.

1 See Force Upsetting Rape Culture or The Antirape Movement in Barrie Levy: Women and Violence. Berkeley: Seal Press, 2008. pp. 135-164.

www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/live/2017/ jan / 21 / womens-march-on-washington-and-other-anti-trump-protests-around-the-world-live-coverage (called 28. 03. 2018)

www.nytimes.com/2016/10/08/us/donald-trump-tape-transcript.html (called 28. 03. 2018)

4 In 2017, with three to four million participants, 2017 was the largest protests in US history.

www.iwf.org/blog/2805547/Distinctive-P- Hat-Deemed-Offensive-to-Transgender-Women (called March 28, 2018)

6 Sigrid Schade; Silke Wenk: Studies on visual culture. Introduction to a transdisciplinary research field. Bielefeld: Transcript, 2011.

www.dazeddigital.com/artsandculture/article/34401/1/carolina-meyer-wants-your-dirty-knickers-for-her-cunt-quilt (accessed 28 03 18)

Sarah Held lives in Vienna and has a doctorate in textile art for the visualization of sexual violence and femicides. For thematic relaxation, she teaches queer-feminist pornography at various Austrian universities. In her free time, she enjoys traveling with Girl Gang’s Street Harassment.

Q2 2019 A QUILT IS A WAGE: Stitch n Bitch (Gap$) journal

Some Stitch n Bitch Gap$ quilt collaborators gather at Block Gallery (Bronx Museum AIM annex) Tribeca NYC March 5, 2019
Left to Right: Wendy Vogel, Brandon Neubauer, Laura Rugarber, Anh-Thu Nguyen, Shilpa Mankikar, Lianne Sheplar, Rahsaan Gandy, Pamela Beth Grossman, Coralina Rodriguez Meyer, Holly Hager

Over a dozen quilters gathered to build financial literacy, close the Wage Gap and pin down sultry skivvies after a wintry mix settled over Tribeca NYC on Tuesday March 5, 2019. Lead by social justice enthusiast and special projects director for Democracy at Work Institute, Anh-Thu Nguyen initiated a conversation about the history, present and future challenges to equal pay for all Americans.

As Director of Special Projects, Anh-Thu leads and supports market development initiatives, innovations, and strategic partnerships for worker cooperative creation, scale and growth. She supports DAWI’s NYC work through the NYC Council-funded Worker Cooperative Business Development Initiative, providing consulting, education and technical assistance to emerging worker cooperatives and developers. Her work has encompassed international human rights, social enterprise, and sustainable fashion. She began her career with the UN Assistance to the Khmer Rouge Trials (UNAKRT), and has launched and consulted on several conscious beauty and fashion brands, including being on the founding team of MAKE Beauty. She studied Classics and Government at Georgetown University and received her JD from the University of Texas School of Law. We were honored to have her encyclopedic knowledge and visionary action as a source of inspiration during the skill and knowledge share exercise.

Beginning by snacking and laying out the Underwear Audit palette, participants gathered over a pristine Queen sized bedsheet-cum-tablecloth to examine our collective ideas on pay parity across marginalized groups. Anh-Thu provided insightful breakdowns of equity versus income statististics and ways to make the invisible economic forces that are structurally stacked against us apparent. A document with links including resources for economic development in NYC as well as articles expanding on her talking points is available here.

Breaking down the barriers to economic information, Anh-Thu covered the history of redlining and pinklining from FDR’s HOA and housing policies to current trends in top banks that prevent minorities from getting loans- not to mention period poverty. Predatory lending, Unbanked Americans and de-banking big business into credit unions were discussed. More surprising than the short falls in income disparity is the equity disparity. The historical and structural barriers to entry in owning a home for example, are linked not only to the recent laws passed that allow women to have property in their name in the US, but also women’s proclivity to pay debt and be more financially responsible. This proclivity makes us higher targets to predatory lending, as well as heavier consumers of educational debt which has skyrocketed in our generation. It is no surprise then, that lacking financial independence or pay parity in the workplace; women are slower in achieving the “American Dream” or the Myth of independent homeownership- especially in dense, expensive cities where jobs are more likely to be occupied by women. This despite being the largest representation of domestic workers and care-takers.

Notwithstanding the large scale historical and political challenges of electing women to higher office in order to improve the financial barriers, there has been progress where policies at state and government scale come as a result of a more diverse local government cabinet. This underscores the urgency to vote in local elections- no matter the state’s democratic or republican leaning. Challenges remain, as was intimately felt in preparation for Stitch n Bitch Gap$ when 6 out of 7 invited speakers dropped out. Two had last minute obligations for other engagements, while the remaining 4 were either censored by their compliance officers or self-censored to avoid castigation from their high-powered careers in finance. While self-censorship is a common, understandable tactic in order for women to remain in upwardly mobile positions of financial power, it is most insidious when compliance officers censor these women from sharing basic economic literacy tools with their community. Moreover, it is a chilling illustration of how income disparity is increasing, and access to social services is decreasing for the most vulnerable populations. In 2019 it is more taboo for women in finance to explain the definition of a 401k to her comrades, than a man of the highest power to threaten sexual violence against women on a national stage. The bravery #MeToo women have demonstrated in risking their careers is a vibrant transformation of our culture, but comes at a cost.

Taking stock of their own experiences and tools for improving conditions in their community, the quilters began pitching images across the table that depict the struggle. The quarterly question arose as to whether an image expressing critique or hope should be prioritized. After consolidating ideas into one powerful symbol, the group debated and settled on an image. A man bolstered high by a dollar sign parallels a woman held low by a cent sign, is divided by a red to pink ombre measuring line: representing not only the problem of pay parity, but also historical equity with red and pink-lining. In further detail the group concluded the colors representing clothing for each gender sign would be neutral so as not to exclude other gender identities, and that the man’s head would be a pale skin tone while the woman’s would be a dark brown. The ultimate test of image clarity and power will be judged on the street, by the wider public at an upcoming protest.

Pinning the worn out women’s underwear into the late evening, participants eagerly put finishing touches on the panty portrait. A final shake test revealed white gaps in an otherwise colorful image, which were quickly filled by the remaining supporters. With a last heave and sway of the queen sized bedsheet, the 10th Cunt Quilt was born at 9:30pm March 5, 2019.

A Quilt is a Wage: Q2 Stitch n Bitch (Gap$) @ Block Gallery NYC March 2019

Tuesday March 5, 2019 5:00 PM – 8:30 PM @ Block Gallery (Bronx Museum SoHo) 80 White Street 2nd floor New York, NY 10013

Expanding our financial literacy to close pay gaps, and create a protest flag in our intersectional image; we will gather our community of feminists for a Stitch n Bitch at the Bronx Museum’s Block Gallery in SoHo. Tuesday March 5, 2019 5-8:30pm we will collaborate with diaspora leaders in the financial industry. We will build consensus, pin down and stitch up worn out women’s underwear onto stained, Queen sized bed sheets at a cozy craft night. Participants from all genders will make a new Cunt Quilt (the official flag for our Femilia) to be carried at an upcoming protest. We’ll provide experts, snacks and materials while you bring questions about investing your tax return, negotiating a raise, or any other pressing concerns for your community. This event is Free and open to the public. RSVP eventbrite

The quarterly Stitch n Bitch is a way to check in with your neighbors and build consensus across communities. We share questions and experiences with different topics critical to the international women’s movement. Stitching in solidarity with citizens earning a fraction of their economic value, the Q2 2019 Cunt Quilt (Gap$) will be the 10th quilt made by feminists since the 2016 election. According to a recent UN report, the last decade has demonstrated the lowest growth in pay parity globally and domestically. Further investigation into pay disparity reveals a historic and systemic form of economic violence that is simultaneously domestic and structural. Experts from the finance industry will lead a discussion about the history and future of pay while engaging with participant’s current economic challenges. 

Airing the nation’s dirty laundry since the 2016 election, thousands of self-identifying women have donated their used panties to the national Underwear Audit. Hundreds of feminists have sewn several Cunt Quilts and performed their citizenship at dozens of protests to honor the diversity of challenges we face in the fight for our humanity. Ranging from access to reproductive rights, to gender violence, housing vulnerability, LGBTQ visibility, economic inequality, immigration sanctuary, disability rights, racial justice, religious freedom and environmental protection; the spectrum and depth of our civil rights will become visible. Feminism is the acknowledgment that structural injustices exist in our community and that equality is achieved through action.

Cunt Quilt History:
Reacting to the 2016 US election, the artist began a national Underwear Audit to collect worn out women’s underwear to sew onto Queen sized bed sheets at Stitch n Bitch craft salons. The Cunt Quilt dissent flag is born on protester’s backs at marches to demonstrate an intersectional women’s movement. Stitch n Bitch participants celebrate the political heritage of women’s work such as Arpilleras Desaparecidos, Underground Railroad Codes, and Concentration Camp Quilts by creating a banner with their own message. While communicating their needs, the community will stitch an image in a democratic, crowd-sourced fashion. A performance of citizenship in three acts; the Underwear Audit accounts for our bodies, the Stitch n Bitch builds solidarity, and the Cunt Quilt holds our governing bodies accountable. This endurance project will continue until there is a woman in the White House.

Cunt Quilt @ Queens Museum S.T.E.P show

Saunter Trek Escort Parade… (S.T.E.P.)
A two part exhibition of walk-based work with Flux Factory and the Community Partnership Exhibition Program

We are pleased to announce the upcoming exhibition Saunter Trek Escort Parade… (S.T.E.P.), curated by Christina FreemanEmireth Herrera and moira williams. Exhibition Dates: Oct 28 2018-Dec 2 2018

The first part of the exhibition and related events will take place September 6th – September 30 in and around Flux Factory with gallery hours on Saturdays & Sundays from 1-6PM, and by appointment. A special Flux Thursday will take place on September 13 as part of S.T.E.P.

The second part of the exhibition will take place at Queens Museum’s Community Partnership Gallery, October 28 to December 2.

Performances and walks will take place October 28November 4November 11and December 2

S.T.E.P…. seeks to be an overlapping convergence and entanglement of walking, walk-based works and programming, mobilizing throughout New York.  S.T.E.P… embraces the many ways and bodies we walk while asking how walking as a creative act can challenge notions and open conversations around visibility, gender, labor, exploration, counter-mapping, colonialism, feminism, motherhood, contesting borders, community building, calling out gentrification, street harassment, (dis)ability, carbon debt, who sets the pace and measurement of the world, the power of dreams, and our entanglements between all of these and one another. S.T.E.P…. is open to all people of all abilities.

Saunter Trek Escort Parade… (S.T.E.P….) events are free and take place throughout New York City. To register for upcoming event associated with the Queens Museum iteration, please RSVP by clicking on the title of the event:

October 28, 2018, 12 – 4 PM  

Opening Reception for S.T.E.P

Manchester Rambler, with Morag Rose + The Loiterers Resistance Movement

Stitch N Bitch, participatory performance by Coralina Rodriguez Meyer

Territorial Hissings, sound workshop by Dominika Ksel

November 4, 2018, 1-4PM

+ Acts of Inexactitude, performance by Sara Morawetz

+ Utopia – just around the corner, walk by Geert Vermeire  

November 11, 2018, 2-5PM

+ On Love, A Crystalization, walk by Magali Duzant

+ 10AM-12PM Trees of Forests Not Yet Here: walk by Lisa Hirmer

(Queens Botanical Garden)

December 2, 2018, 12 – 5 PM

Closing Reception for S.T.E.P

+ Red Line Labyrinth, walk by Walis Johnson

Available for self-guided remote experience throughout the duration of the exhibition:

+ Sleepwalks, by Lee Pembleton and Andrea Williams.

About the Curators:

Christina, Emireth and moira met at Flux Factory’s residency in 2016. Christina’s practice intervenes into existing systems, approaching culture as something we actively shape together. moira williams’ co-creative practice weaves together performance, bio-art, food, sound, sculpture and group walking as a lived experience. Emireth Herrera is a curator who aims to reveal social transformation through democratic processes.

Participating Artists + Collaborators:

Francheska Alcantara, Artcodex (Mike Estabrook + Vandana Jain), Becky Brown + Annette Cords, Compassionate Action Enterprises (Joan Giroux + Lisa Marie Kaftori),  Magali DuzantBrendan FernandesGudrun Filipska + Carly Butler,  Alexander Freeman, FRONTVIEW, Angeline Gragasin,  David HelbichLisa Hirmer,  Maya Kaminishi JeffereisWalis JohnsonKubra Khademiillesha KhandelwalDominika KselCoralina Rodriguez MeyerLisa MyersKristyna and Marek MildeSara MorawetzMorag Rose + The Loiterers Resistance MovementJulie Poitras Santos, Phil Smith, Camille TurnerGeert Vermeire + Stefaan van Biesen + Simona Vermeire, Jevijoe Vitug plus Walking Discourse (Astrid Kaemmerling + Minoosh Zomorodinia)

Support + Sponsors:

Support for Saunter Trek Escort Parade… (S.T.E.P….) is provided by Friends of Flux, Queens Museum, the Andy Warhol Foundation for Visual Arts, The National Endowment for the Arts, in-kind support from Materials for the Arts, ART WORKS arts.gov,  the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council, the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo, and the New York State Legislature.

Cunt Quilt in Times of Israel Press January 2019

Smaller but still angry, Women’s Marches draw thousands across US

With protest movement divided by anti-Semitism allegations, tens of thousands demonstrate in Washington and other cities against Trump policies. 20 January 2019, 2:00 am

Demonstrators gather at Freedom Plaza during the 2019 Women's March on January 19, 2019 in Washington, DC. (Zach Gibson/Getty Images/AFP)

Demonstrators gather at Freedom Plaza during the 2019 Women’s March on January 19, 2019 in Washington, DC. (Zach Gibson/Getty Images/AFP)

WASHINGTON — Amid internal controversies and a capital city deeply distracted by the partial government shutdown, the third Women’s March returned to Washington on Saturday with an enduring message of anger and defiance aimed directly at President Donald Trump’s White House.

The original march in 2017, the day after Trump’s inauguration, flooded the city with pink-hatted protesters. The exact size of the turnout remains subject to a politically charged debate, but it’s generally regarded as the largest Washington protest since the Vietnam era.

This year was a more modest affair for multiple reasons, with a crowd estimated in the tens of thousands packing several blocks around Freedom Plaza, just east of the White House, for a daylong rally. The march itself took about an hour and only moved about four blocks west along Pennsylvania Avenue past the Trump International Hotel before looping back to Freedom Plaza.G

Organizers submitted a permit application estimating up to 500,000 participants even though it was widely expected that the turnout would be smaller. The original plan was to gather on the National Mall. But with the forecast calling for snow and freezing rain and the National Park Service no longer plowing snow because of the shutdown, organizers on Thursday changed the march’s location and route.

As it turned out the weather was chilly but otherwise pleasant, and the mood among the marchers a now-familiar mix of sister-power camaraderie and defiant anger toward Trump and the larger power structure.

Demonstrators hold signs on Pennsylvania Avenue during the Women’s March in Washington on Saturday, Jan. 19, 2019. (AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana)

As always the Trump administration was the direct target of most of the abuse — with fresh bitterness stemming from more recent events like Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh’s successful confirmation last fall despite a direct accusation of sexual misconduct when he was in high school.

One sign declared, “Strong women only fear weak men.” Another stated, “MOOD: Still pretty mad about Kavanaugh.”

Parallel marches took place in dozens of cities around the country.

In New York, several hundred people converged on Manhattan’s Foley Square, near the Brooklyn Bridge. Many more took part in a separate march in Central Park organized by women angered by what they saw as the anti-Semitism of the movements leadership.

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, the newly elected Democratic congresswoman who has emerged as a progressive favorite and a bugbear of conservatives, spoke at both New York rallies.

“Last year we brought the power to the polls, and this year we need to make sure that we translate that power into policy,” she said at the Central Park rally, to loud cheers. “That means we won’t let anyone take our rights away.”

In Los Angeles, a few hundred demonstrators gathered in Pershing Square downtown and marched to Grand Park.

“Democracy is not a spectator sport and I came out to continue to stand for that proposition, said Ellen Klugman of Marina Del Rey. “If I don’t go, who will?”

A protester takes part in the Third Annual Women’s March LA in downtown Los Angeles, California on January 19, 2019. ( VALERIE MACON / AFP)

In Denver, protester Jacquelynn Sigl said it’s a mistake to focus solely on Trump.

“It’s not OK, the rhetoric the president has today, but it’s also important to know this isn’t an anti-Trump rally,” she said. “This isn’t about him. It’s about the thought that’s running across the country right now.”

At a march in Iowa, where she was campaigning for president, New York Democrat Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand addressed anti-Semitism allegations against the movement’s senior leadership, which have roiled preparations for the marches.

“We know there is no room for anti-Semitism in our movement. We know this,” Gillibrand said, according to CNN. “We know that our movement is empowered when all of us lift each other up.”

In November, Teresa Shook, one of the movement’s founders, accused the four main leaders of the national march organization of anti-Semitism.

The accusation was leveled at two primary leaders: Linda Sarsour, a Palestinian-American who has frequently criticized Israeli policies, and Tamika Mallory, who has maintained a public association with Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan.

People rally during the Third Annual Women’s March LA in downtown Los Angeles, California on January 19, 2019. (DAVID MCNEW / AFP)

Shook, a retired lawyer from Hawaii, has been credited with sparking the movement by creating a Facebook event that went viral and snowballed into the massive protest on Jan. 21, 2017. In a recent Facebook post, she claimed Sarsour and Mallory, along with fellow organizers Bob Bland and Carmen Perez, had “steered the Movement away from its true course” and called for all four to step down.

The four march organizers have denied the charge, but Sarsour has publicly expressed regret that they were not “faster and clearer in helping people understand our values.”

Some progressive groups declined to take part in this year’s marches, and several Jewish women said they felt torn and opted to take part in separately organized rallies.

For her part, participant Ann Caroline called the controversy “heartbreaking,” but added that to march for women’s rights “doesn’t mean that I align myself with the founders’ values.”

Thousands of demonstrators gather at Civic Center Park during the Women’s March in Denver, Colorado on January 19, 2019. (Jason Connolly / AFP)

Despite pleas for unity, the internal tensions were most keenly felt in New York, where an alternate women’s march organization held a parallel rally a few miles away from the official New York Women’s March protest.

As New York march director Agunda Okeyo was making her opening remarks, an activist named Laura Loomer came on stage and shouted that the march “does not represent Jewish people” and called it “the real Nazi march.”

Loomer is a longtime political provocateur whose previous protests have included handcuffing herself to a Twitter office after the service banned her and jumping a fence at a home owned by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.

As Loomer was ushered from the stage, Okeyo challenged her.

“This is not a negative day,” Okeyo said. “You’re not coming with that. We’re not doing that today. What we’re doing today is we’re going to uplift each other and we’re going to make sure we stay positive.”