Project for Empty Space is pleased to present Abortion is Normal NWK, an exhibition organized by a collective of cultural practitioners as an urgent call-to-action exhibition to raise both awareness and funding in support of accessible, safe, and legal abortion. Abortion is Normal NWK includes the work of artists Christen Clifford, Dominique Duroseau, Yvette Molina, Viva Ruiz + Thank God For Abortion, as well as cultural partner, Shout Your Abortion. The exhibition will open to the public on Tuesday, September 10th, from 6-8 pm, in 2 Gateway Center, Newark NJ 07102.
Abortion is Normal NWK comes at a time when legal abortion is under acute attack throughout the United States. Simultaneously, the 1973 landmark ruling, Roe vs. Wade, which federally sanctions the right to choose, is in jeopardy of being reversed. The exhibition brings together a heterogeneous array of artists countering with their personal response to abortion and abortion access in order to create an inclusive and empathetic entry point to this conversation. Not all of these artists have necessarily personally had an abortion; however, the underlying thread of this exhibition is that abortion and reproductive health affect everyone.
Abortion is Normal is about access, open conversations, acknowledgment of intersectionality, inclusivity, and visibility within the context of a conversation on reproductive rights. It strives to be multi-centered in its approach; acknowledging both the nuance of who is affected by legal abortion as well as who is affected by the potentiality of relinquishing safe and legal access to care.
Abortion is Normal NWK is part one of a multi-part series of exhibitions. The intention of this series is not only to spread the message that exercising choice and embracing body autonomy is a right; but also, to create a space for camaraderie through participation. Many components of Abortion is Normal NWK are interactive, and invite visitors to have ownership and autonomy in the conversation. The Abortion is Normal mailer-poster is one such participatory component- the public is invited to engage with this poster- to activate it and share it on the streets, on social media, and in every space that they feel appropriate to share the message that safe, legal, and accessible reproductive healthcare is normal.
The visual collateral for ABORTION IS NORMAL (2019/2020), is a reminder of the breadth and scope of the individuals who have the right to body and reproductive autonomy. It is our mandate that the right to Safe, Legal, and Accessible abortion and reproductive healthcare is for everyone, and affects everyone- regardless of race, economics, or gender identity. We also acknowledge, in this identity framework, that not all Safe, and Legal, reproductive healthcare is accessible for everyone: we understand that intersectional oppression plays a key role in how this fight for autonomy is framed- and finally, we hope that by acknowledging this, through this visual language, that we can make steps towards change.
This work is partially inspired by the work of artists who traverse the artscape between representation and conceptualism- like Kameelah Janan Rasheed (Flexin’ My Complexion, 2014), and Byron Kim (Synecdoche, 1993) who acknowledge and assert the reality of a diverse America.
The identity for ABORTION IS NORMAL was created by Chantal Fischzang and Rebecca Pauline Jampol.