Glasgow Women’s Library: 21 Revolutions

21st anniversary of GWL marked by female Scottish writers and artists

Glasgow Women’s Library: 21 Revolutions

Ruth Barker

21 Revolutions extended an invitation to emerging and established female, Scottish writers and artists to respond to Glasgow Women’s Library’s collections. The project marks the organisation’s 21st anniversary.

GWL hosts an eclectic collection of material, from suffragette campaigns, feminist literature, the national Lesbian Archive, fanzines, knitting patterns and recipes. For the artistic commissions, which resulted in a new publication and this current exhibition at Platform, each artist worked at the GWL to produce new research, narratives, poetry, prints and editions.

Ruth Barker
used the invitation to develop her practice in performance and designed a wearable, limited edition scarf. The work ‘has been influenced by photocopied ephemera in the archive, handwritten notes, announcements of meetings and handmade posters and fliers,’ says Barker. While Kate Davis, using intricate pencil drawings, explored the ‘complexities of the past’ through her work.

Helen de Main’s work for 21 Revolutions comprises 21 screenprints inspired by the library’s iconic Spare Rib magazine collection. Main observes that its ‘political and feminist discourse still seems pertinent now, with the continued pressure over decades to reach anything resembling equality.’ 21 Revolutions considers feminism’s historical relationships to image, text, activisms and representation, while re-engaging the library with responses to feminism and its contemporary cultural and political questions.

Platform, Glasgow, until Sun 7 Dec.

21 Revolutions: Exhibition of Writings

Glasgow Women's Library celebrates its 21st birthday by commissioning 21 women writers to make new work inspired by GWL’s library, archive and museum artefacts.


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